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%My chief purpose in the pages which follow is not to add 
another to the many and excellent descriptions of the Abbey 
which exist already^ but it is to give an account of the 
artists — the masons^ carpenters^ sculptor Sy painters^ and other 
craftsmen — who built and decorated it. 

At the same time^ in working over much new material from 
<!WS5., or recently printed sources^ or in examining welUknown 
facts from my own point of view^ I have necessarily had to 
reconsider the history of the Abbey buildings, 

I want to show thatj just as in thirteenth-century Italy we 
assign certain works of art to Amolfo^ Niccolo^ or Giotto^ so 
here we can identify the works of John of Gloucester^ mason ; 
John of St. Albans^ sculptor ; and William of Westminster^ 
painter. And as in Florence^ so at Westminster^ a personal 
human interest must add to our reverence for an otherwise 
abstract art. 

I have wished also to get at the facts as to building organ- 
isation in the Middle Ages — the " economic basis " of Gothic 
art. If this is understood^ it seems to me that the futility of 
copying the mere shapes taken by this great historical art must 
be acknowledged. The more we imitate the works of the men 
who wrought the marvels of Gothic art^ the less we have of 
their spirit^ for they adventured into the unknown. 

It has been generally assumed that nothing is known, or 
may be known^ of the ** architects '* of our medieval English 
buildings^ but so great is the mass of records which have been 
preserved regarding their erection^ that an account of the 
builders of several of the cathedrals can be made out with 
some fulness. I have satisfied myself that this is the case in 



regard to Canterbury, Lincoln, Tork, Durham, Salisbury, 
Wells, and Exeter, and I have given some account of how the 
last-named was built in the Architectural Review of 1904. 
Westminster Abbey, however, is by far the best documented 
of our mediaval buildings. 

The Introduction and two following chapters of this book 
may, I hope, serve as a guide to the Abbey considered as a 
work of art. Three or four chapters which follow are his- 
torical and technical, and the larger part of the rest is 
concerned with the mediaeval craftsmen whose works are 
there preserved. 

For several of the most detailed and valuable illustrations 
of this volume I have to thank friends, and above all d^r. 
OAicklethwaite for the use of his analytical plan and section. 
OAr. S. Vacher put his large detailed section at my disposal, 
and OAr. Lee allowed me to consult some original drawings 
of Wren's in his possession, ^r. F. G. Knight lent me his 
now invaluable survey of the Chapter House doorway. Figs. 13 
and 14, drawn when it was in a much better condition. Both 
OAr. Vacher and OAr. Knight have now given these drawings 
to the Spiers Collection at the South Kensington Art Library. 
I am indebted also to Mr. J. S. Slater, OAr. T. OAacLaren, 
the late Mr. H. W. Brewer, and Mr. R. Webster. My 
thanks are also due to the proprietors of The Builder, The 
Building News, The Architect, and The British Architect 
for allowing me to use some of the drawings referred to in the 
forms in which they have appeared in those journals ; and to 
my friend, Mr. S. C. Cockerell, for reading my proofs. I 
must also express my gratitude to the Dean and to all who 
have charge of the Abbey for the way in which I have been 
enabled, as a mere casual visitor, to minutely examine the 


fabric and the works of art which it contains. The vergers ^ 
who fulfil a difficult office with great patience^ have always 
been most helpful^ although I went to them entirely un- 

Collecting for the purpose of this volume^ which has ex- 
tended over a period of a dozen years or morcy has necessarily 
been done in the intervals of business^ and I hope that some 
faults will be excused on this account. I should have liked 
my references to have been much fuller^ and here J should 
say that all those given by numbers alone^ as : 47 1 , i and 
2, mean in every case — The Record Office^ Exchequer 
Accounts^ ff^orksy Q.R. (now K.R.): the numbers referring 
to the bundles and items ^ as^ in the above example : bundle 
471 ; items i and 2. 

At the last moment I must add a word of thanks to my 
friend ^r. Emery Walker for the plate he has preparea of 
the noble portrait of Richard 11. 

October igo6. 




Introduction i 

I. The Interior of the Church .... 9 
II. Cloister and Precincts 37 

III. The Exterior and " Restorations " . . -63 

IV. From the Foundation to Henry III. ... 94 
V. Henry III., His Artists and the Design . .110 

VI. Points OF Construction 127 

VII. The First Masters 150 

VIII, Later King's Masons 174 

IX. Fire, and Completion of the Nave . . .198 

X. A Mason and a Carpenter . . .212 

XI. Henry the Seventh's Chapel .... 222 

XII. Westminster Sculptors 240 

XIII. Painters of the Westminster School . . 257 

XIV, Metal Workers and Glaziers .... 284 
XV. The Mosaic Workers 309 

XVI. The Tombs and Chapels 329 

Appendix 357 

General Index 375 

Index of Craftsmen 378 




Portrait of Richard II. at Westminster Abbey . Fr^ntu^t 

1. General Plan of the Abbey and Palace compiled from Sand- 

ford, Wren, and Fig. 2 2 

2. The Abbey buildings, from a plan by Mr. Mtcklethwaite . 3 

3. Plan of the Church, by Mr. Micklcthwaite ... 5 

4. Bay of the Interior of Presbytery (Lower Storey). By Mr. 

S. Vachcr 12 

5. Bay of the Interior of Presbytery (Upper Storey). By Mr. 

S, Vachcr 13 

6. Upper Storey of S. Transept. By Mr. J. A. Slater . 17 

7. The Old Stalls 24 

8. Original Misericord •25 

9* Plan of half of the Ambulatory, showing old paving . . 28 

10. Early part of Cloister (r. 1245). From a Drawing by Mr.T. 

MacLaren 31 

11. Early part of Cloister (r. 1 245). From a Drawing by Mr. T. 

MacLaren 33 

12. Bay of N. Walk of Cloister 35 

1 3. Doorway from Cloister to the Chapter House. By Mr. F. G. 

Knight, 1873 39 

14. Enlarged detail of the last 41 

15. From Old Drawing of Chapter House .... 44 

16. Window of Chapter House. Drawn by Mr. H. B. 

Brewer . 4; 

17. Tile from Chapter House : the "Salmon of St. Peter" . 46 

1 8. Tile from Chapter House floor 47 

19. Tile from Chapter House floor 50 

20. Tile from Chapter House floor 50 

21. Tile from Chapter House floor 51 

22. Tile from Chapter House floor 52 

23. Tile from Chapter House floor 52 

24. Tile from Chapter House floor 53 

25. Tile from Chapter House floor 53 

26. Rose Decoration 54 

27. Ancient Belfry which stood on the N. side of the Church . 58 

28. Anns of Henry III., from the Chapter House floor . . 62 




29. One of Four Tiles from Chapter House floor, representing 
a Rose Window 

30. Ancient Rose Window of N. Transept. From a Drawing 

by Wren 

31. Gable of N. Transept. Ancient form, from a Drawing 

made before the last great restoration 

32. North Transept. Recess above right-hand porch, ancient 

form .,••••••. 

33. North Transept. Diagram of form of Ancient Porch 

34. Conjectural plan of the Confessor's Church 
35^. Ancient Door in Dormitory, now Westminster School 
35^. Ancient Masonry (r. iioo) in Little Cloister . 

36. Norman painting in undercroft of Dormitory 

37. Plan of St. Katherine's Chapel .... 

38. Detail of Arcade of St. Katherine's Chapel 

39. Henry III. and the Relic 

40. Church, Shrine and Bells from M. Paris . 

41. Destroyed Church of St. Pharon at Meaux 

42. Pillars and bases at Reims and Westminster 

43. Diagram of Chapter House Windows 

44. Diagram of lower part of west front of Amiens Cathedral 

45. Diagram of bay of the interior, Amiens 

46. Diaper from the west front, Amiens Cathedral . 

47. Vault at Avesniers, near Laval : r. 1 1 80 . 

48. Diagram of Vault of Aisles at Westminster 

49. Relation of Vault to Clerestory Windows 

50. Diagonal and Transverse Ribs of Vault over Presbytery 

51. Section of Mouldings of Ground Arcade in Presbytery 

52. Super-Capitals of Triforium 

53. Arrangement of Windows in Apsidal Chapels . 

54. Plans of Main Piers : east and west of the crossing . 

55. Bronze Band (full size) 

56. Profiles of Capitals from S. Transept 

57. Buttress System S. Side of Choir .... 

58. Diagram showing Iron Tie-bars of the Interior . 

59. Sketch Plan of Apsidal Chapels, showing the passage along 

windows . 

60. Suggested relation of Apse and Lady Chapel 











6i. Various Works at entrance to Lady Chapel . . 144 

62. Various ties to the arches of the Chevet .... 146 

63. Diagram showing junction of the larger and later diaper, 

with the earlier, on N. side of Presbytery . . . 147 

64. Section showing dates of the several parts of the work. By 

Mr. Micklethwaite 148 

65. Masons and Carpenter, r. 1270. From MS. "Life of the 

Confessor" 151 

66. Foundations on the north side of the Choir . . 157 

67. Head of a Lay Master, high up in N. Transept . .172 

68. The Queen's Cross, Northampton. Drawn by Mr. R. 

Webster 175 

69. Diagram showing constructive idea of Waltham Cross . . 178 

70. Tomb of Aymcr de Valence 183 

71. Edwardian Window in Norman opening .... 200 

72. Islip's screen. West end of Nave Aisle .... 210 

73. Porch added to N. Transept, probably by Yevele, After 

Hollar 215 

74. Statue of St. Anne, Henry Vllth Chapel. Drawn by Mr. 

R. Webster 228 

75. Statue of St. George, Henry Vllth Chapel. Drawn by Mr. 

R. Webster 229 

76. Bay design, Henry the Seventh's Chapel . . . .231 
yj. Diagram of Vault System, Henry Vllth's Chapel . 232 

78. Head in Triforium 256 

79. Painted Altar-piece of St. Faith's Chapel . . . • 258 

80. Painted figure of Donor, at side of Painting Fig. 79 . . 260 

81. Painting on the Tomb of Queen Alianor .... 262 

82. Continuation of the last 263 

83. ^'Cufic decoration" from an English MS. Bible, Corpus 

College, Cambridge 264 

84. Restoration of painting on Coronation Chair . . . 266 

85. Gesso decoration on the Jamb of the tomb of Aveline . . 267 

86. Decoration of Arch-moulding 268 

87. Painted decoration on vault of Aveline's tomb. From 

Vetusta Monumenta 268 

88. Small Shield with lion in gesso from Crouchback's tomb . 269 

89. Part of painting from basement of Crouchback's tomb . . 270 

90. The Sedilia in 1821. After Harding .... 272 



91. Figure from Sedilia. Drawn in 1775. 'Oetusta (Monumenta . 273 

92. Painting on Soffite of arch above Sebert's tomb . . . 274 

93. One half of Canopy over tomb of Richard II. . . . 280 

94. Other half of Canopy over tomb of Richard II. . . . 281 

95. Part of Bron7.e Effigy of Henry III. From Vetusta tMonumenta 285 

96. Figures engraved beneath Effigy of Henry III. . . . 286 

97. Seal of Queen Alianor 287 

98. Part of Inscription from tomb of Henry III. . . . 288 

99. Seal of Henry III 298 

100. Ancient glazing of Apsidal Chapels 300 

10 1. Ancient glazing of Apsidal Chapels 301 

102. Border of last 302 

103. Coat of Arms of Earl of Cornwall. From east window . 303 

104. A Fragment from cast window 303 

105. Name stamped on iron- work at Windsor .... 305 

106. Brass letten existing in the Presbytery pavement . . -313 

107. Pattern of one of the small Circles in pavement . . •314 

108. Pattern of top of tomb 315 

109. Tombs of John and Margaret •318 

1 10. One-half of S. side of the Marble and Mosaic Basement of 

the Shrine. From Vertue's engraving. The inscription 

is of the time of Abbot Feckenham .... 320 

111. Restoration of part of inscription on Basement of Shrine . 322 

112. Monogram 323 

113. Mosaic Pattern restored 323 

114. Plan of Basement of Shrine 324 

115. Part of West end of Basement of Shrine . • 3?S 

116. Restoration of one of the patterns of Mosaic. Tomb of 

Henry III 326 

117. Pattern of Mosaic floor in the Confessor's Chapel . . 327 

118. Mosaic Centres of Pavement (Fig. 117) .... 328 

119. Burial of Queen of Charles V. of France. From a contem- 

porary MS. 330 

120. On S. Wall of Cloister 347 

121. Abbot Ware. From his seal 348 

122. Cresting of Screen of Chapel of St. Andrew . . 352 

123. Inscription over door of Chapel 354 

124. From Marble base N.W. angle of Crossing . . . 356 


*^ It is a building second to none amongst all the marvels of 
architectural beauty produced by the Middle Ages, Like 
all such buiUingSy its beauty is convincing and sets criticism 

William Morris, ** Westminster Abbey." 

The Abbey Church of St. Peter is but a part of 
what was once the great monastic establishment at 
^ p. Westminster. Those who have seen 

y. . the Abbeys of Fountains, Furness, and 

Rievaulx, ruined, indeed, but other- 
wise unaltered, may best imagine what Westminster 
was as it stood complete with its attached farm- 
buildings, mill, and workshops, when the vineyards, 
orchards, and tilled fields came up to the precinct 
walls. The Church, excluding the seven western 
bays of the Nave, and Henry VII.'s Chapel to the 
east, was built by Henry III. in the twenty-five 
years from 1245 '^ 1270. The Chapter House, 
the portion of the Cloister which leads to it, and 
those of its bays which are attached to the south 
aisle of the early part of the Church, are all parts 
of Henry IH.'s work. The western bays of the 
Church, the rest of the Cloister, and the Abbotts 
House (now the Deanery) were built in the four- 
teenth and fifteenth centuries. 

The exterior has been so completely recased that 
to describe it will be to describe a series of modern 
works. Save for the mass, and a certain grace 
of general form, only the interior can concern 
us as an authentic work of ancient Art. However, 
the south side, as seen from the Cloister, with its 


four tiers of windows and immense flying buttresses, 
is a very noble composition, and the south-east 
corner, between the Chapter House and Henry VII/s 

Fig. 1. — General Plan of the Abbey and Palace compiled from 
Sandfordy Wren, and Fig. 2 

Chapel, is quiet and has an echo of romance. I 
want to think of it here as it was when it stood 
in its first fairness, when Henry IIL, in 1262, 
ordered pear trees to be planted in " the herbary 
between the King's Chamber and the Church," 
evidently so that he might see it over a bank ot 
blossom (see Figs, i and 2). 


The Church within has been little injured, except 
by the erection of pompous tomb-trophies, and 
modern sham Gothic fittings and glass, which are 

Fig. 2. — ^The Abbey buildings, from a plan by Mr. Micklethwaite 

even more injurious because more specious and 

The interior ever surprises me by its loveliness. 
The grace of the parts and their ordered disposition, 
the slender springing forms and the gaiety of the 
style, the fine materials and the romantic early 
monuments, are arresting beauties of a matchless 
whole. The skilful planning of the Apse and 



radiating Chapels, the great space which opens 
between the Transepts and the Altar, and the 
contrivance by which two windows of the Eastern 
Chapels are placed so as to tell in the vistas of the 
long aisles, are triumphs of arrangement. This 
beauty of plan is the necessary foundation for all 
the other beauties of the church (Fig, 3). 

On first entering by the North Transept door, 
look across the transverse vaults to the great South 
Rose, Then diagonally right and left, where 
wide and distant prospects into the Choir and 
Presbytery open to the view. It is possible from 
the north-east corner of the Transept, where we 
stand, to see the outer windows of the middle stage 
through the Triforium openings west ot the 
crossing. On the east one can see away through 
the Transept Chapels towards the Altar and the 
Shrine. Crossing towards the South Transept, the 
central avenue, looking east, is very satisfying. 
Notice the difference between the simpler vaulting 
of the eastern limb and that over the Choir west 
of the crossing, which is, perhaps, only ten years 
later. The height is greater than in any other 
English church ; it is 103 feet to the crown of 
the vault of the choir. The width of the church 
across the transepts is about 200 feet, and the total 
length, including Henry VII,'s Chapel, is about 
500 feet. 

The diagonal view from the door of St. Faith*s 
Chapel in the South Transept is the finest of all. 
One may see, between some dozen slender marble 
colunms, and beyond the middle space, the shapely 
windows of the apsidal chapels. 







Starting from the South Transept for a first rapid 
survey of the Church, and having regard particu- 
larly for the earlier features, examine the sculptures 
high up under the Rose window, and then, before 
leaving the transept, enter the Chapel of St. Faith, 
where, over the Altar, is a figure of the tutelary 
Saint, painted by a contemporary of Cimabue. 
Passing down the South Aisle of the western limb 
of the Church and returning by the North Aisle, 
in each case outside the Choir^ examine the series 
of sculptured coats-of-arms wrought about 1260, 
the finest early heraldry in England, In the South 
Aisle they have been mostly pushed aside from 
their proper positions, but in the North Aisle 
the original disposition is nearly intact. Notice, 
especially, the Confessor^s Cross, and the three 
leopards of England — the first two on the south 
side — and on the north, the double-tailed lion ot 
Simon de Montfort, and the lilies of France. The 
shields seem to be suspended by straps from project- 
ing heads of fine character. 

Turning now into the aisle of the North Transept, 
do not miss the carved spandrels of the wall-arcade, 
especially one of St. Michael and the Dragon. 
Crossing the centre of the church again ascend 
the steps towards the altar. On the left are three 
of the most beautiful tombs anywhere to be seen, 
those of Aveline, Countess of Lancaster (1273), 
Aymer de Valence (1326), and Edmund of Lan- 
caster, son of Henry III. (1296). Opposite, on the 
right, are the Sedilia (1308), and the portrait of 
Richard II. (1398). The floor is of splendid 

Italian Mosaic laid down in 1268. 


Entering the south Ambulatory around the Apse, 
we find within the gates on the right the alabaster 
tombof Cardinal Langham( 1 376) : then the mosaic 
tomb of the children of Henry III., made about 
1272. On the left-hand side we pass first Sebert's 
tomb, with the canopied back of the Sedilia above it. 
The tomb of Richard II. and his Queen (i 394) is the 
next, and then we come to the tomb of Edward 
III. (1377), with little brass images around the 
side, and enamelled coats-of-arms. Opposite, within 
and against the screen of the first chapel, is the 
splendid tomb effigy, in enamelled bronze, of William 
de Valence (1296). On the opposite side of the 
door in the screen is the fine alabaster tomb of John 
of Eltham, son of Edward II. (1336). Examine 
particularly one of these radiating chapels as a unit. 
They are the most perfect works of central Gothic 
architecture in England. Going eastward again, 
the last tomb on the left is that of Philippa, Edward 
III.'s Queen (1369). Observe the coats-of-arms, 
carved with remarkable delicacy in white marble. 
Passing the middle point of the Ambulatory under 
the elaborately sculptured Chantry of Henry V., we 
come next to the tomb of Alianor of Castile, with 
a superb piece of wrought iron to guard it, all a 
work of the last decade of the thirteenth century. 
Opposite, on the right, is the tomb of Sir Ludovic 
Robsart, a much later work ( 1 43 1 ) . Further west, 
on the left, is the mosaic tomb of Henry III., 
which can be best seen from here, as so much less 
of the mosaic remains in place on the other side. 
Beyond it is the plain black marble chest contain- 
ing the body of Edward I. ; and still beyond are 



the three canopied tombs which we saw to the left 
of the Altar. The middle one, especially, has little 
images of " weepers " of the most exquisite quality 
of sculpture — there are no better. 

Go right on to the chapels east of the North Tran- 
sept. At the angle, before entering, is the late, 
double-staged tomb-chapel of Islip, the last Abbot. 
In the chapels beyond are some pretty spandrel car- 
vings and the ruins of a late reredos. Return and 
ascend to the Confessor's Chapel inside the circle 
of royal tombs. At the middle point is the Con- 
fessor's own tomb, and facing it on the west is the 
Coronation Chair. Beginning here, I shall in the 
next chapter more particularly describe the parts of 
the interior in their historical aspect. But before 
concluding the first general survey, visit Henry 
VII.'s Chapel, and look especially at the gates, the 
vault, the tomb of Henry VII. and his Queen, with 
the brazen screen about it, and the tomb of Margaret 
of Richmond in the South Aisle. 

Passing into the Cloister by the door just west ot 
the South Transept, notice the open-work carving 
of its arch, and visit the Chapter House remarking 
especially the figures right and left of the door on 
the inside, the tiled floor, and the remnants of paint- 
ing in the wall arcades — especially to the east. 

From its crowded associations, and the many 
lovely minor works it contains, as well as its own 
intrinsic beauty, this church must be held by 
Englishmen as the supreme work of art in the 


The Shrine and Royal Tombs : The Altar and Coronation Chair : 
The Presbytery : The Crossing and Coronation Stage : The Choir 
and Pulpitum : Nave, Chapels, and Pavements : Glass and Colouring 

** Famous f beautiful^ and stately ; the kuilding toithin Is 
supported by lofty pillars of grey marble,** 

NoRDEN MS. Harl. 570. 

The focus of the whole church was the Confessor*s 
Golden Shrine, which rested upon the high base- 
rpi ^7 . ment of marble and mosaic which still 

// /? / ^'^^^^ ^^ ^^^ centre of the Royal chapel. 
rp 1^ In the earlier arrangement the shrine 
must have been seen from the choir over 
the High Altar, which would have had only a low 
retable. " The shrine of the most illustrious King 
Edward the Confessor was placed on high like a 
candle upon a candlestick, so that all who enter 
into the House of the Lord may behold its light." * 

Some Bohemian travellers who visited the church 
in 1466 wrote with admiration of the large golden 
coffin covered with precious stones, and noticed 
among the relics the stone with the marks ot 
Christ*s feet, which, as we shall see, was given by 
Henry HI. ; also the girdle of the Virgin.f 
Trevisano, an Italian, describing a visit in 1497, 
says : "I saw one day the tomb of King Edward 
in the Church of Westminster, and, truly, neither 
St. Martin of Tours, nor anything else that I have 

• Liber Trinitatis. 

t Pawolowskiy S, Commentarius Brevis, &€., 1577. 



ever seen, can be put into any comparison with it/'* 
Offerings to the shrine continued to be made until 
the Dissolution. Edward I. dedicated to it the 
crown of Llewellyn and his Scottish spoils. 
Richard H. gave a costly silver tablet enamelled 
with the story of the Confessor and the Pilgrim, 
which had been presented to him by the citizens 
of London.f "At St. Edward's shrine," writes 
Caxton, " remaineth the print of King Arthur's 
seal in red wax closed in beryl, on which is written 
' Patricius Arthurus,' " &cc.X 

Directly against the west end of the shrine was 
the altar of St. Edward, which is mentioned in the 
order for the coronations, and in the Cambridge 
manuscript a miniature shows a priest at a lectern 
by the shrine, singing Te Deum laudamus. 

Right and left of the altar were isolated pillars, 
which supported images of the Saint and the 
Pilgrim. Four silver basins for lamps at the shrine 
were amongst the gifts of Henry HL From the 
Book of Customs, compiled by Abbot Ware, about 
the time of the opening of the church,§ it appears 
that these were suspended in a transverse row, two 
over the shrine, one to the North over the tomb of 
Edgitha, the Confessor's wife, and one to the South 
over the tomb of Matilda, queen of Henry L,both 
of whom lie unmarked under the mosaic floor of 
this chapel. To the east of the shrine must have 

• " Account of England " : Camden Society. 

t Fabyan speaks of it as being at the shrine "to this day," a 
passage significantly omitted in the second edition. 

X Prologue, " Morte d'Arthur." 

S Just published by the Bradshaw Society, 


stood the altar of relics, until later it gave place to 
the elevated relic chapel formed by the chantry of 
Henry V. A relic altar was then placed on the 
north side of the shrine.* 

Henry HI/s tomb occupies the usual founder's 
place on the north side. It is similar to the base- 
ment of the shrine, of marble, porphyry, and glitter- 
ing gold tesserae, and it supports a beautiful effigy of 
gilt bronze (c. 1290). Notice on the column to the 
west of the tomb a tiny recess, about 6 in. by i^ in. 
Did it once hold a relic ? The recesses beneath 
the tomb almost certainly contained relics, and 
right at the back of each, hidden in the shadow, is 
a mosaic cross. Next eastward is the tomb of 
Queen Alianor (d. 1290), with a most lovely statue 
of gilt bronze once set with jewels. At her tomb 
lights were kept burning night and day for about 
two hundred and fifty years, so says Fabyan. 

The tomb next in order of date is that of 
Edward I. (1307), a chest of plain polished black 
marble. On great occasions it was covered with cloth 
of gold. Queen Philippa's tomb to the south-east 
(d. 1369) is of white marble sculpture and minute 
tabernacle work, on a basis of black marble. Next 
to her, westward, is the tomb of Edward III. 
(d. 1377), with a recumbent statue, and, on the out- 
side, little " weepers,'' of gilt bronze. Next again, 
both in position and order of time, is the tomb of 
Richard II. and Anne, his queen, which was begun 
in 1394. The effigies of the king and queen are 

• Stanley's "Memorials." The Feast of Relics was July i6. See 
Westm. Cal. in Psalter, 2 A 22, at the British Museum. Jan. 5, Edward 
K. and C. ; Jan. 12, Octave of; Oct. 1 3, Translation of; Oct. 20, Octave. 



Fic. 4, — Bay of the Interior of Presbytery 
(Lower Storey). By Mr. S. Vacher 

Fig, 5. — Bay of the Interior of Presbytery 
(Upper Storey). By Mr. S. Vacher 


of gilt bronze, their robes covered with delicately 
engraved patterns. Above is a beautifully painted 
tester. About the tomb " stood four great tapers 
continually burning."* The whole circle of 
tombs had testers from the first. That over 
Philippa^s is the earliest now existing, but 
Alianor's tomb had a contemporary painted canopy, 
and so must Henry HI.'s have had as well. 

The last king to be buried in the chapel was 
Henry V. (1422), and the circuit of tombs having 
been already completed,*!* an important monument 
was built for him by a most ingenious contrivance. 
An upper chapel, which is supported by little more 
than two staircase turrets of openwork, spans the 
ambulatory and covers a portion of the Confessor^s 
chapel just sufficient for the tomb, on which, says 
Caxton, " is a rich image like himself, of silver 
and gilt, where he is daily remembered and prayed 
for." Now only the wooden core of the image 
remains. The possibilities of the Confessor's 
Chapel being exhausted. Queen Katherine was laid 
in the Lady Chapel, and Henry VI. tried to find a 
place in vain, and was buried at Chertsey. 

Henry VH. refounded the Lady Chapel as a 
second mausoleum. 

The floor of the Confessor's chapel is of marble 
inlaid with mosaic. The state of the pavement 
seems to show that the shrine has been pushed 
westward of its first position. Probably the build- 
ing of Henry V.'s chantry necessitated some 
rearrangement of the shrine and high altar. 

• Caxton. 

t Henry IV. was buried at Canterbury. 


In the splendid painted panel now preserved in 
the Deanery we have the only known remnant of 
Th Alt ^^ Altar. This is a long panel about 
and CorZ ' ' ^^' ^^ 3 ^^ with paintings set in gilt 
tabernacles ornamented with gesso, and 
p , • made " glistering '* with inlaid glass 

imitating enamels. It is clear on com- 
paring it with some of the large pieces of gold- 
smithery of the time, such, for instance, as the 
shrine at Evreux,and another in the cathedral library 
at Rouen,* that it was intended to resemble a piece 
of goldsmith's work set with enamel and jewels. 
Viollet-le-Duc speaks of it as " an object perhaps 
unique in Europe . . . one of the most ancient of 
the great movable retables known, which, by its 
dimensions, could only have belonged to the chief 
altar of the celebrated abbey. If it is not of French 
make it resembles similar work of the middle of the 
thirteenth century, of which some debris remains, 
and it gives us a good idea of the perfection of such 
furniture, made in a manner now entirely for- 

It is clearly a work made about 1 270, and may 
very well have been the original retable placed on 
the altar for the consecration service of 1269.:!; In 
style it would have harmonised perfectly with the 
gold shrine which rose above and behind it. 

We possess also an account § for a marvellous 

* In these we get short lengths of enamels set in borders just like 
the glass imitations in the retable. 

t " Diet. Mobilicr." Cf. our p. 263. 

t Or it may have been a frontal for the Altar. 

S Printed in « Gleanings." 



gold-embroidered frontal for the great altar, which 
was set with jewels and enamels. Four women 
were engaged in making it for three years and nine 
months, and it cost the immense sum of jC^^^' 
nearly ^3000 of our money. It must have been 
the most splendid piece of " Opus Anglicanum " 
embroidery ever wrought. This also was doubt- 
less in place at the dedication. In the " Customs " 
a " precious frontal " and others are mentioned in 
the directions for ornamenting the altar. A careful 
drawing of the Presbytery, made on the occasion of 
Abbot Islip's funeral in 1532, and now at the Society 
of Antiquaries, shows the altar in its later state 
after the high stone reredos had been built ; but 
above the reredos was a Rood beam, which was 
probably part of the original arrangement. On 
either hand of the Crucifix were figures of Mary 
and John, and beyond them two cherubim.* 

From several accounts of Henry III.*s time it 
appears that this was a common arrangement. 
Below the Rood the drawing shows a tester above 
the altar, and figures of SS. Peter and Paul. It 
is likely that it also existed from the first. An 
order of 1243 directs that the crowns of SS. 
Edward and Edmund, the keys of St. Peter, and the 
sword of St. Paul should be well gilt. AH these 
may have belonged to the Rood beam.-f 

Between the High Altar and the shrine stood the 

• Engraved, but not well, in "Gleanings." The suspended 
tabernacle for the sacrament is made to look like a turret. For a similar 
composition dating from the Xlllth Century, see MS. Bible I.D.L. in 
the B.M. 

t Sharpens MS., Cal. Close Rolls. 


Fic. 6. — Upper Storey of S. Transept. By Mr. J. A. Slater 



Coronation Chair and the famous stone of Scone on 
a stage or low platform, and facing west like a 
bishop's throne in a basilica. The original bill for 
it, which has been preserved, speaks of it as " a 
chair for the Scotch stone by the altar and in front 
of the feretrum."* A Scottish account, which 
seems to have been written only a little later than 
the removal of the stone from Scone, tells how it 
had become " le sege du prestre a ce haute auter " 
at Westminster.-f- The chair is of wood, patterned 
over with elaborate designs of gesso. It was entirely 
gilt except for some inlays of glass imitating 
enamels. The ugly lions at the bottom are com- 
paratively modern. 

The floor in front of the altar is a mosaic of 

porphyry and Italian marbles. Inlaid in the marble 

rpi p is an inscription of brass letters which 

, " gives the date of 1268, so this was also 

^ ^* in place at the dedication of the church. 

The romantic canopied stone tombs to the left 
of the altar and the wooden sedilia on the right 
were entirely covered with gilding, patterned gesso, 
inlays of coloured glass, and with painting ; they all 
probably belong to the first third of the fourteenth 
century. Frederick of Wiirtemburg, who visited 
the church in 1592, noted that "the beautiful 
tombs of kings and queens " were " all covered over 

• The stage for it is mentioned in the account. See ArchaoL 
Journal^ xiii.; and cf, G. C. Scott, " Eng. Church Archr.'* 

t Skene, Chron. Picts and Scots. '' Beside the shrine of St. 
Edward" (Robt. of Gloucester). " For a mass priest to sit in ... in 
a chair of old time made full line " (Harding). 


with gilding." The reclining statues of these 
tombs were highly painted, so that they seemed 
like the knights and ladies themselves in their most 
splendid robes. High above these tombs were 
testers, which are shown in the earliest views of 
the interior. 

The sedilia— or more properly the presbyteries — 
the seats of the clergy to the south of the altar, are 
placed directly above the tomb of the supposed 
founder of the church, Sebert, and formed one 
work with it, so that the whole is usually called 
" Sebert's tomb." According to Walsingham, 
Sebert's body was brought from the cloister to this 
place in 1308, and it is evident that the arch over 
the tomb and the sedilia are of this date, and make 
part of one composition. The panels contained 
large paintings of the founders, Sebert and Edward 
the Confessor, and of other kings and saints ; two 
of those on the inside are still in fair condition and 
are most noteworthy. At first the tomb proper 
must have been visible from the presbytery through 
the low arch, which later was filled up. A con- 
sistent plan seems to have been maintained from the 
first that the altar and all that was placed near to 
it should be gilt. We must try to imagine the 
dazzling shrine, the altar with all its furniture, the 
coronation chair, the sedilia, and the tombs, all like 
colossal pieces of goldsmiths* work, when they were 
lighted up by many lamps suspended from a great 
silver circle* and reflected in the mirror-like floor. 

The Inventory of 1388-t' makes mention of a 

• Henry III. gave such a circle in 1 246, 
t Archaologia^ vol. 52. 



canopy for the King^s Cage (Cawagium) by the 
great altar. The editor of the Inventory gives 
reasons for thinking that this " cage " must have 
been the King's Pew. It probably stood to the 
west of the sedilia.* We may think of it as a 
screen of tracery enclosing the royal seats and richly 
painted and gilt. Occupying the south-west bay 
of the presbytery it would have completed its 
splendidly decorated furniture and monuments.-f* 
" Two drawing purple curtains for the [Lenten] 
Veil before the High Altar" are noted in the Sup- 
pression inventory. The reredos or screen which 
now divides the presbytery from the Confessor's 
Chapel is of fifteenth-century work. The arrange- 
ment of the sculptures of the life of the Confessor 
on the east side in a series ot loops is exactly like 
similar loops in Henry V.'s chantry, and the detail 
of the niche canopies is almost identical with the 
tabernacle from Margaret Woodville's Chapel of 
St. Erasmus (once by the Lady Chapel), which is 
now placed above the entrance to one of the 
northern chapels. We may with great probability 
say that it was erected during the reign of 
Edward IV., for the filling, at the back of Sebert's 
tomb, which was probably done at the same time 
as the screen, bears the badges of Edward IV. 
The eastern side of the screen is still in an authentic 
condition, and some vestiges of painting — blue 
and vermilion — are yet to be seen on the tracery. 
Dr. M. R.James has pointed out that the sculptures 

* Mr. Micklcthwaite. 

t A chantry at Salisbury " was vulgarly called the cage, and used as 
a pew." " Bib. Topog. Brit." vi. p. So. 



of the frieze closely resemble the pictures in a MS. 
Life of the Confessor at Trinity College, Cam- 
bridge.* " Both in selection and in composition 
the pictures in the MS. are so closely related to the 
sculptures that the latter might well be supposed 
to have been adapted from them." 

The western side of the screen was defaced in 
1705 when a new altar-piece was set up. Enough 
was found when it was altered again and again by 
Wyatt and Scott to show that it had been similar 
to the eastern side, except that in the middle, 
occupying the space of five niches, was a recess for 
a (probably sculptured) retable. The whole had 
been decorated in colour, the ground red and 
azure, the mouldings and carvings gilded. These 
restorations, however, succeeded in removing the 
original traceried wood doors of the screen which 
had remained until this time.-f- If we may judge 
from the drawing on the Islip Roll the statues to 
the left of the altar were ecclesiastics and those to 
the right (sainted) kings. 

The lower floor of the presbytery — the square at 
the crossing of the church — was separated from 
,— the transepts by screens. The floor was 

^ . about 18 in. higher than at present, and 

^f^ ^ here stood the Paschal candlestick be- 
^ . tween the tombs of two abbots.. | It 

^ had seven branches, and must have been 

^^ ' of great size. To the west would have 

stood the matins or choir altar, mentioned in the 

• B. 10, 2. 

t Sec Neale and *' Gleanings." X Sporley MS. 


Book of Customs. Again, the directions of 
Henry VII. for masses, provided that they should 
be sung " at the altar under the lantern place 
Detween the Quire and the High Altar" until his 
new chapel was " fully edified." In this space at 
the intersection of the two vistas of the church, 
has, from the first, always been set up the throne for 
the coronation. It was placed on a stage covered 
with tapestry and cloth of gold ; above was a tester 
of silk hung around with little silver bells. The 
order for the coronation of Richard II. provided 
that a square stage covered with tapestry and railed 
about, and with flights of stairs eastward and west- 
ward, should be set up " close to the four high 
pillars between the Quire and the Altar.'* In the 
earlier order of 1307 it is also directed that the 
throne should be placed between the monk's choir 
and the presbytery of the great altar. From this 
stage at the centre of the church the Archbishop 
appealed to the people whether the king should be 
crowned, and they cried out, " Let it be done." 
Here the oath was taken by the king : To grant 
the laws and customs and franchises of the people, 
to guard the peace, and to do justice in mercy. 
To all which young Edward swore — " Je le graunt, 
je le garderez, je le ferez." The accounts for the 
coronation of Edward I. show that a similar stage, 
called a " pulpitum," with tester and silver bells, 
was prepared at the same place for him and his 
queen, Alianor of Castile. 

The stage was so much elevated that men might 
ride under it. For the coronation of Edward III. 
the stage (" pulpitulum ") and canopy were covered 


with tapestry, samite, and cloth of gold. The 
rails of the altar, the pavement and the tomb -of 
Edward I., were also covered with cloth of gold.* 
At the crossing were set up the state herses 
where dead kings lay before their burial.-f- 

The choir extending westward from the crossing 
was separated from the nave by double walls sup 
Th Ch ' P^^^^^S ^ ^^^^ called the pulpitum. In 

J p i the centre of the structure was the 

choir door. A plan.*}: made about 171 5 

^ ' for Wren shows the choir stalls, the 

screens separating the crossing from the transepts, 

and the position of the pulpitum. 

The stalls were destroyed in 1775 ; the plan 
shows sixty-four in all, and agrees with a descrip- 
tion printed in 1708 which says that there were 
twenty-eight stalls on each side and eight at the 
west end.§ 

The stalls are shown in Sandford's '* Coronation 
of James II." : their arched canopies were sup- 
ported by slender shafts with moulded annulets and 
caps. Two of the carved misericords still exist, and 
also what is probably a portion of one of the carved 
divisions || (Figs. 7 and 8). These may be parts of 
the work begun in 1 253, when Jacob was the "Junc- 
tor." Dart (1723), who says that the stalls were 
crowned with acute Gothic arches supported by 

• Brayley and Britton, Palace of Westminster, pp. 119 and 143. 

t See Sandford's account of the funerals of Henry VII. and of the 
Duke of Albemarle. 

t In the possession of Mr. Lee. § Hatton's " New View." 

II " Gleanings." Sandford shows a level cornice, and this may have 
been original. 



pillars, and that the abbot's and prior's stalls were re- 
spectively to the right and left on entering, adds that 
in the further ends on the south side " is remaining 
thepaintingof Richard 11. . . . The lower parts of 
the picture are much defaced by the 
backs of those who fill that stall ; which, 
if I mistake not, is the place of the 
Lord Chancellor when the House of 
Lords repairs here. . . • Proceeding, 
we rise by the first ascent towards the 
altar to the second or lower pavement. 
On each side of it are doors entering 
into the transepts ; hence by another 
ascent we come to the altar." As will 
be shown further on, the existing por- 
trait of Richard IL was painted for this 
position in the choir. Such were the 
stalls from which the monks *' repeated 
from quire to quire the thanksgiving of 
the convent." * A new " great book " 
for the lectern in the middle of the 
choir was provided in 1399. 

At Easter and other feasts the floor 

was strewn with green stuff, partly for 

I suppose, of the scent, as in the 

of the Holy Grail — " The hall was 

Fig. 7.— The 
Old Stalls 

the sake, 


strewn with flowers, and rushes, and sweet herbs, 

and gave out a smell like as it had been sprinkled 

of balm." 

The choir and presbytery would have been 
ornamented with hangings. Abbot Berkinge had 
given some -f- on which the story of the Confessor 

• Matthew of Westminster. t Sporley. 



was wrought, and Mary, * Countess of Pembroke, 
left others on which the arms of Aylmer de 
Valence were figured.* Weever, writing in 1631, 
tells us of "cloths of Arras which adorn the 
choir," and he gives the Latin verses from one 
which represented a coronation (? the Confessor's) H* 
others depicted the stories of the Confessor and the 
Pilgrim, and the Adventure with a Thief, also 

Fig. 8. — Original Misericord 

inscribed with verses. These tapestries, which we 
may conclude from the subject — the Life of the 
Confessor — were ancient, were ejected in 1644, but 
the tradition of hanging the presbytery with cloths 
was kept up. Hollar shows the interior so 
decorated on the occasion of the coronation of 
Charles H-i 

When Alianor of Castile had her chamber tapes- 
tried the people of the time said it was " like a 
church." § 

Some portions of the plain stonework which 

• Sharpe's Wills. 

t Hone regum sedem ubi Petrus consecrat aedem^ Weever, p. 45. 

X Kecpc, writing in 1681, says that the tombs were " visible but by 
drawing the hangings which are hung before them for the better 
adornment of this place." 

§ Quoted by Hudson Turner. 



may be seen on each side of the present choir gates 
appear to be ancient and may have formed part of 
the pulpitum. The loft of the pulpitum was 
served by two staircases, which would have occu- 
pied some of the space between its two walls. The 
western part of the church was shut off from the 
choir by this structure and the nave had its own 
altars. The principle nave altar must have been 
placed some distance to the west and in front of 
the door to the choir against a screen. To the 
right and the left of the central altar were two 
others, and above in the loft was a fourth. In the 
Book of Customs we get this group of altars thus 
defined in an account of the lights : The Altar of 
Holy Cross in the Nave (that is the central altar) : 
the Altar of St. Paul and the Crucifix, to which, 
for kissing the feet of the Crucifix, the people 
ascended the steps on one side and descended on 
the other (that is from the loft) : the old Altar of 
St. Mary (on the left " by the North door " some 
accounts say) : the Altar of Holy Trinity (the 
remaining altar and, therefore, on the south side). 

This arrangement persisted until the Reforma- 
tion, and the Suppression inventory names the 
"Jesus altar below" (Holy Cross) and the "Jesus 
altar above " (St. Paul and the Crucifix).* 

There cannot be a doubt that the Jesus altar 
above was on the pulpitum, for the inventory 
associates with it " a pair of organs," and organs 
were usually placed on those lofts, from which also 
the Epistle was read. The organs of the church 

* Cf. Durham rite?, and Mr. S. John Hope on Gloucester. ArchaeoL 
Joumaly 1897. 


are mentioned as early as 1242, The Bohemian 
travellers of 1466 spoke of the "music delightful 
to hear." The " organs" must have been modest 
things, very different from the big steam-driven 
machines we now employ to roar at us. The 
mediaeval ideal in music, I fancy, was that expressed 
in " The Flower and the Leaf" : 

" And then the company answered alle 
With voices sweet entuned and so smalle." 

It is evident that the Nave Rood or Crucifix 
at first stood near enough to the loft to allow of 
Christ's feet being kissed ; but there is some 
evidence in the church that a beam once passed 
across the nave between the pillars five bays from 
the crossing,* 

While the choir was being built in 1251, 
Edward of Westminster was ordered to have a large 
cross placed in the nave of the church at West- 
minster and to buy two cherubim to stand on 
each side of the cross.-f* In the Suppression in- 
ventory mention is made of ** the Crooked Rood," 

The nave is particularly interesting on account 
of its being one of the very few instances in which 
XT builders of a later time tried to make 

^, \ their work like that which they were 

,^ ' completing. The general lines are 
p maintained ; the " detail " is that ot 

the later time, (Another most impor- 
tant example of this desire for harmony is the nave 
of Beverley Minster.) In the aisle wall at the 

♦ Mr. Micklcthwaitc. t Close Rolls, 35 Henry III. 



south-west is a projecting gallery with a com- 
munication from the abbot's house. 

In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries the 

Fig. 9. — Plan of half of the Ambulatory, showing 
old paving 

transeptal and other chapels were enclosed by 
screens erected by several donors, details of which 
may be seen in a document printed in Stanley's 
"Memorials." At this time the eastern door out 
of the north transept-aisle, which has been recently 

opened out again, was closed in forming the Chapel 



of St. Andrew. St. Michael's Chapel in the central 
bay of the same transept-aisle still preserves a part 
of its reredos, and its altar slab stands behind a 
tomb. The south end of the south transept also 
was screened off to form the Chapel of St. Blase. 

The last vestiges of what must be the original 
arrangement of the paving of Henry IIL's work 
are even now visible ; but the arrangement of these 
slabs is much less clear than when I first noticed 
it. Its condition forty or fifty years since is care- 
fully shown on the old lithographed plans which 
stand about the church. The slabs were from Pur- 
beck. In the apse around the ambulatory straight 
strips running east and west left spaces between 
them which were filled with squares set diagonally 

(Fig. 9). 

The radiating chapels seem to have been tiled 

like St. Faith's Chapel, which retains its original 


There is evidence enough to show that the 
windows, of the ground floor at least, were glazed 
p . , with grisaille patterned glass, set with 

^ J . morsels of bright colour and charged 
^' with heraldic shields. The windows 
of the apse and the transept roses would have 
had stories in brilliant ruby and sapphire glass. 

The Fabric rolls, as we shall see, show that in 
the last years before the consecration of 1259 
much painting, including figure-work, was done. 
On the walls, here and there, are some slight 
vestiges of colour decoration. A good authority 
writes : "The interior was decorated by being 



whitened and stoned in red lines. The diaper 
work of the triforium was gilt on a red ground ; 
the sculptured bosses were gilt and coloured,"* 

The wall arcades may have been decorated in 
vermilion and gold like the eastern bays of the 
Chapter House. Some slight stains may be seen 
on the capitals by the mosaic tomb of Katherine ; 
and the fine shields in the aisles outside of the 
choir, with the straps and heads to which they 
seem to be suspended, still show gilding and colour. 
The sculptured angels in the south transept also 
show traces of colour decoration. 

The marble-work, which was polished, varied 
from grey-green to purplish-grey, and this must be 
thought of as part of the colour scheme. -f- 

I have spoken of the brilliant decorations of the 
presbytery, and we have seen how splendid were 
the earlier tombs of gilt bronze, mosaic, and marble. 

Even the polished marble and alabaster tombs 
were touched with gold and colours. A drawing 
in the Powell Collection at the British Museum 
shows that the mouldings and carvings of Alianor's 
marble tomb were gilt, and colouring may still 
be traced on Langham's tomb. For the decora- 
tion of Philippa's tomb see the model at South 

All the stone tombs, earlier or later, seem to 
have been brightly painted. For example, the 
effigy of Abbot Colchester (1420) had gesso enrich- 
ments, and the whole tomb was coloured and 

• G. G. Scott, jun., " English Church Architecture." 

t Parts of the piers in the east aisle of the north transept still 

preserve the original surface. 











gilded.* Most of the tombs had painted testers ; 
that of the Duchess of York was painted with the 
Crucifixion on a blue ground studded with stars^ 
Even the ironwork of Henry V,'s tomb was illumi- 
nated red and blue, in lengths charged respectively 
with three lions and three fleurs-de-lys. 

The screens of the chapels were also painted. 
Keepe tells us that the screen of the chapel of St. 
Andrew in the north transept was " richly adorned 
with curious carvings and engravings, and other 
imagery work of birds, flowers, cherubims, devices, 
mottoes, and coats-of-arms of many of the chief 
nobility painted thereon. All done at the cost of 
Edmond Kirton, Abbot, who lies buried on the 
south side of the chapel under a plain grey marble 
tomb." Dart says that the screen was " one of the 
beautifuUest pieces of ancient work that I have 
seen, . . . not long since removed." 

In a MS. collection of arms and inscriptions from 
the church, dated 1680, which is in my possession, 
there is a coloured drawing of the screen to the 
chapel of St. Andrew. Its chief feature was a 
beautiful brattishing, or band, consisting of angels 
holding shields, and between each pair a blossoming 
tree " supported " by a crowned eagle and a crow, 
which hold the ends of a label on which was 
" ]^rie elizony In another place was a large rose 
surrounded by rays, and an inscription with the 
date 1367.-^ (Fig. 122.) 

This manuscript also shows that the screen of 
St. Paul's Chapel formed by the fine tomb of Sir 

♦ " Gleanings," and Stothard's Effigies. 

t See Appendix. Sec Fig. 122, but it was probably painted, not carved, 



Ludovic Robsart, 1431, not only had a row ot 
coats of arms painted, as may still be traced on the 
frieze-like band, but that the whole was brilliantly 

Fig. II. — Early part of Cloister (r. 1245). From a Drawing 
by Mr. T. MacLaren 

coloured and gilded, including the big heraldic 
beasts and the banners they bear, as well as his 
crest and garter,* These facts are a mere index to 

• A fully-coloured lithograph of this tomb, published last century, 
shows that the ground colour on the stone-work was blue. 

c 33 


the evidence as to the profuse use of colour, but no 
index can give any idea of the colour itself. Such 
a list of blues, reds, and gold may even seem repel- 
lant to the reader who has not made a long study 
of mediaeval painting. Every one who makes that 
study, however, is glad to admit that the old painters 
were masters of a secret simple as innocence, yet 
consummate as the tradition of centuries could 
make it, by which the juxtaposition of bright 
hues brought about a result at once soothing and 
exalting, a high harmony of vision. 

In trying to think back a picture of the church 
as it was, we must by imagination set out the 
treasures of the altar, suspend the coronae of lights 
from the vaults, and recall the chanting priests in 
their splendid vestments, as they passed with their 
shrines, censers, crosses, and banners along the aisles.* 
One of the banners, a gift of Henry III., was of 
red samite embroidered with a dragon of gold, the 
eyes of which were of sapphire, and whose tongue 
seemed to move.-f- 

Of one such scene we have an account evidently 
written by an eye-witness. In May 1307 the 
Abbey was visited by Peter of Spain, and on this 
occasion a solemn mass was celebrated in memory of 
Queen Alianor. Her tomb was lighted up by forty- 
eight candles placed about it, each weighing 16 lbs. 

• See the several inventories; also Gasquet on the Suppression of 
the Monasteries. A cup called St. Edward's mazer, a cross of beryl, 
and a dish of precious stone called agate, ornamented with precious 
stones and pearls, are mentioned. Excheq. Augt. Off. Treas. Roll, 
II m., 109. 

t Such a dragon banner was used with another representing a lion. 
They were called Rogation banners. 


Twenty-four candles were placed at the tomb of 
King Henry, and twelve around the feretrum of 
St. Edward. Then to the marble columns all along 
on both sides of the fere- 
trum beams were fixed as 
far as to the end of the 
choir, and on the beams 
candles were placed all 
the way, not more than a 
foot and a half apart ; and 
the monks and all the 
people carried candles — 
" So that the radiant lights, 
like the glory of the starry 
sky, exhilarated the souls 
of the beholders with 
joyousness." * 

Perhaps the most re- 
markable yearly pageant 
must have been that of 
the eve of St. Peter ad 
Vincula, when by a grant 
of Henry IIL eight bucks of Windsor forest were 
delivered in the church so that those who carried 
them should " make two companies before the 
High Altar." f 

One of the last great spectacles of the old order 
of things was on the occasion of Wolscy's receiving 
the Cardinal's hat in 1515. The mass was sung 
by the Archbishop of Canterbury, many other 
bishops and abbots being present, he of Rochester 
being crosier-bearer to the Archbishop. Colet 

• Chron. Reigns of E. I. and E. II. t Close KoWs, fassim. 


Fig. 12.— Bay of N. Walk 
of Cloister 


preached, and said* that " a Cardinal represented 
the Order of Seraphim, who continually burneth 
in love, and therefore he only is appareled in red, 
which colour only betokeneth nobleness." During 
the prayers the Cardinal " lay gravelling " (sic) 
before the altar, and the Archbishop set the hat 
upon him.* 

• Cal. State Papers, Hen. VIII. 



The Cloister : Chapter House : Rose Decoration : Refectory : Belfry 
and Precincts. 

** In tkisi cloisters I have passed^ perhaps^ some of the most 
rational hours of my life. In each renewed perambulation round 
its endless aisk I still found my thoughts ever receive some new 

John Carter. 

Our best authority for the cloister is the account 
given by Keepe : " I shall trouble you a little 
rpt longer by leading you out ot the Church 

^ . . into the cloister which you are let into 

^^^ ^^' by two doors. By that towards the 
west was the picture of Our Saviour Christ nailed 
to the Cross, the Virgin standing on one side and 
St. John on the other, curiously painted and very 
pitiful to behold. And round about the sides of 
these cloisters were other noble paintings with a 
variety of verses alluding to the history of the 
foundation and the figures. On every side oppo- 
site to the walls, where now are only frames of 
wood, were fine glazed windows of tinctured glass 
of divers colours, and over the entrance into the 
Chapter House was placed the statue of the 
Blessed Virgin and Our Saviour in her arms and 
two angels on each side, all richly enamelled and 
set forth with gold and blue, some vestigia of all 
which are still remaining whereby to judge of the 
former splendour and beauty thereof." * 

• H. Keepe, 1683. 



The Crucifixion by the seat of the Master of 
the Novices (mentioned above) had been made to 
the order of the Prior Merston, who died in 1 376.* 

The present shafts and capitals of the north walk 
of the cloister are mostly ancient, and some 
authority for the cusping of the sub-arches is still 
evident at the west bay ; the cusping of the circles 
is modern, but doubtless resembles what was once 
the form.-f- The glazing spoken of by Keepe must 
have filled the tracery heads of the openings, or 
fenestrals, as it will be convenient to call them, down 
to the iron bar. Some fragments of glass remained, 
I believe, before the restoration, and in one or two 
of the smaller spandrels of the tracery are still to 
be found the iron margins to which the glass was 
attached by pins. The bays of the north-east 
angle, which form part of the earliest work of 
Henry HI., are particularly remarkable. See 
Figs. 10 and ii. I have drawn one of the ex- 
ternal fenestrals of the north side for the sake of 
the shadowing, which is one of the great beauties 
of such traceried arcades (Fig. 12). 

Carter engraved the beautiful Decorated bays ot 
the eastern walk before they were rebuilt by Blore 
about 1835,1, whose copy seems to have been what 
we call accurate, save that Purbeck marble was not 
used for the shafts. Some ancient base stones in 
the triforium, which were evidently prepared for 
this work or other similar bays and discarded, show 
sockets for Purbeck shafts. The groove for glaz- 

• See Document in Stanley's " Memorials." 
t The circles were grooved for such cusps. 
X See W. Cavelcr also. 


Fig. 13.— Doorway from Qoister to the Chapter House. By Mr. F. G. Knight, 1873 


ing the tracery was also omitted by Blore. The 
state of the cloister a century since is described in 
detail by Carter. In the west walk one of the 
fenestrals had lost its tracery ; the north and east 
walks were nearly unaltered. Of the south walk 
he says, " the tracery from six of the eight win- 
dows was cut away about seven years ago." These 
bays were entirely rebuilt by Scott, who says 
that the tracery of the south walk had been en- 
tirely lost before his time ; * but he appears to 
have meant the cusping, as the main divisions 
existed in two bays till 1820 at least, and are shown 
in a careful engraving by Neale. Neale also shows 
the west walk, of which the forms of the openings 
were as at present, except that the cusping only re- 
mained to the heads of the lights, and none to the 
tracery. A few of the jamb-stones and muUions 
of the west walk fenestrals are still ancient, and 
one narrow bay at the north-west corner, which 
appears to be a copy made in Wren's time of the 
original work, is untouched. The forms of the 
cusping of this bay, which are echoed again in the 
iron gates set up about 1750, are not followed in 
the new work, although it would seem that they 
would have been the best guide for it. Up to the 
present time the inner walls and vaults of the 
cloister walks remain untouched save for a newly- 
made recess at the south-west corner which is sup- 
posed to represent a monk's lavatory, but, as no one 
proposes to wash here now, it is a mere toy. The 
vaults and side walls are most terribly decayed, but 
the experiments made of the preservative effects of 

• "Gleanings." 

Fig. 14. — Enlarged detail of the last 


whitewash in the vaulted passages which lead out 
of Dean's Yard show that this leprosy might still 
be cleansed by such simple means, were it not that 
we always prefer to do some great thing in 
" restoration." 

The several ornamental doorways leading from the 
cloister are practically disappearing by rapid decay. 
The fine thirteenth-century door from the choir 
to the cloister (Fig. lo) is represented in an 
engrj?Ving in W. Caveler's book. In the hollow 
of the moulding are set roses, and there is a fair 
queen's head to the left and a decayed king's head 
to the right, Eleanor and Henry probably. 

The splendid entrance to the vestibule of the 
Chapter House is best represented in some excellent 
drawings published some thirty years ago in the 
" Sketch-book of the Architectural Association." * 
(Figs. 13 and 14.) A large part of the injury here 
followed the application of Scott's Preservative 
Solution (shellac in spirit, />., French polish), which 
was rashly applied without adequate experiment. 
This " preservative " was being used in the cloister 
in 1 878, when a protest from the Athenaum stopped 
it.-f "The first step towards preservation has been 
to remove more of the surface than would have 
perished in a century ; ... on the preserved ribs 
scarcely a moulding line remains." \ We have seen 
from Keepe's account that the Chapter House door 
was painted in bright colours. A sketch in theBurges 
collection at South Kensington shows that the 

• Vol. vii., by Mr. F. G. Knight, who has been so good as to allow 
me the use of the originals. 

t Aug. 17 and 31. J Builder^ Sept. 7, 1878. 



foliage was of vermilion and gold on a background 
of blue. The sculptures are described in chap. xii. 

The outer vestibule of the Chapter House is low 
because the dormitory passes over it, but it is ex- 
Ch M tremely pretty and a perfect introduction 

jT to the burst of glory beyond. In the 

inner vestibule the window on the right 
is a restoration of Scott*s, for which he thought he 
had found some authority, but how much is 
doubtful. The west wall of this inner vestibule is 
one of the best preserved parts of the fabric; 
being very much out of sight it has been hardly 
at all tampered with, and a dark ochre wash still 
protects the stone. Where this skin has been 
broken through decay is rapidly taking hold of 
the stone. In the outer vestibule, a later phase of 
the same process may be followed, there most of 
the surface is eaten away and only very little of 
the protective coat remains. There is a crypt 
beneath the Chapter House with walls no less 
than eighteen feet thick, with a joint in the walling 
five feet from the outside. It would seem that it 
was begun of a smaller size, and that the outer 
thickening was added before the superstructure 
was commenced. 

The noble Chapter House and crypt must have 
been begun concurrently with the church. 
Matthew Paris speaks of it as " the incomparable 
Chapter House," under the year 1250, and indi- 
cations in the fabric accounts prove that it was 
completed as a structure by 1253. '^^^ Rolls 
of Parliament show that it was early used for the 



assembly of Parliament, but the monks retained 
the use of it until the Dissolution. The state ot 
the Chapter House before restoration is fully de- 
scribed by Carter in the Gentleman s Magazine and 
later in Scott's " Gleanings/' In 
his " Recollections," Scott says : 
" Not a point was missed which 
would enable me to ascertain the 
actual design of any part, nor was 
any old feature renewed of which 
a trace of the old form remained. 
I know of no parts which are 
conjecturally restored but the 
following : the external parapet, 
the pinnacles, the gables of the 
Fig. 15.— From Old buttresses, and the roof." 

Drawing of Chapter As tO this rOof, it is, I think. 

House unlikely that it originally had a 

steep pyramid ; that at Wells 
still retains a flat roof ; the one at Salisbury is a 
capricious alteration against, I believe, the evidence. 
For the steep roof of the Lincoln Chapter House 
reason is found in the gabled roof of the western 
extension. The Westminster Chapter House had 
a flat roof within a generation or so of the Dissolu- 
tion ; it so appears in the so-called Aggas Map of 
London, as well as in the views of Hollar. One ot 
the flying buttresses is shown by a rough sketch in 
the Crowle Collection at the British Museum. 
Instead of the gablets there was a low capping 
directly above the slope of each flyer, and this may 
have been the original form (Fig. 1 5). The interior 
vault stood fast until 1740, when it was assisted to 


WW.','; '. ^ ■■ ■• •■'T.i 


s-i ■.•■■, 

fall. The central column 
with its carved capital was 
still standing when Scott al- 
most discovered this wonderful 
building. Numbers of the 
moulded ribs from the vault- 
ing were found walling up 
one of the windows, and the 
ancient springers with their 
hooks for the iron ties still 
remain. We shall see that the 
western window was altered 
at an early time (p. 200) ; it 
was originally of four lights 
with tracery like that on the 
blank north-west side of the 
octagon, which was found 
nearly intact. It is unneces- 
sary to speak of the glass, 
which was probably originally 
of white pattern-work, as it 
was at Salisbury Chapter 
House. Fig. 16 shows the 
form of the windows. 

The sculptured Majesty in 
the tympanum of the door is 
modern. Carter says : " The 
double archway entering the 
Chapter House has had its 
dividing column with nearly 
all its tracery cut away.*' The 

fine figures to the right and 

left are original, and represent fio. 16.— window of chapter houic. 

Drawn by Mr. H. B. Brewer 

^!. fiiil SISU il 

■ lM^>i\ 


the Virgin and the Angel. The carved archivolt 
and jambs with little figures seated amidst running 
foliage are untouched and lovely. 

The arcade of the interior with its marble 
columns and capitals is to a great extent original.* 
The sculptured capitals in polished marble on the 
east side are guaranteed as authentic by Scott, who 
calls them exquisite. The mouldings and diaper 

Fig. 17. — ^Tile from Chapter House : " the salmon of S. Peter 

here show considerable remnants of gilding and 
colour. This is represented on the paper cover of 
an old " Handbook to the Abbey," published by 
Bell. The lithograph is lettered " Arcades in the 
Chapter House as originally decorated." The 
hollows were all coloured black and blue, the 
mouldings vermilion, the projecting fillets being 
gilt. The capitals and their abaci were gilt. The 
diaper in the spandrels was gilt on a vermilion 
ground. One of the diaper patterns is a most 
beautiful trellis of natural istically treated rose. 

• The little heads are all or mostly modem ; but see three at the 
west end of the inner vestibule. 



The mid-fourteenth-century paintings in the 
eastern bays of this arcade are, or rather were (for 
only some shadowy, but beautiful heads remain), 
of Christ surrounded by angels. The series from 
the Apocalypse westward was given by John of 
Northampton late in the fifteenth century. 

The tile floor of the Chapter House is almost 

Fig. 1 8. — Tile from Chapter House floor 

entirely ancient, and must be the finest pavement 
of the kind now existing. It had been protected 
by a wooden floor up to the early part of last 
century. Cottingham, in Vol. XXIX. of " Archaeo- 
logia," noted the discovery of these tiles, and made 
drawings from them, which were published in 
1842.* " On the removal of the boarded floor the 
pavement was found to be in a very perfect state, 
few tiles being broken, and the colours in many 
parts as brilliant as when first laid down." Some 

• J. G. Nichols' Gothic Tiles. 



of the tiles which form the outer border represent 
a fine rose window, others display King Henry's 
arms ; the designs of others are evidently taken from 
Eastern stuffs, and still others have figure subjects. 
These last, which I was allowed to examine and 
draw some ten years ago, are quite as fine as the 
otherwise unequalled Chertsey series, with which 
they have much in common. They may even be 
earlier works by the same maker. The accounts 
show that they can be dated about 1255. Three 
varieties, which contain figures of a king, queen, 
and abbot, must represent Henry HI., Eleanor ot 
Provence, and Crokesley. The king, seated on his 
throne, plays with a brachet, which drags at his 
master's mantle; the queen has a hawk; and the 
abbot blesses with hand upraised. A fourth tile 
represents the Confessor giving his ring to the dis- 
guised St. John, and a fifth has two musicians, one 
playing a harp, the other a fiddle with a bow. 
The published drawings give little idea of the value 
and beauty of these tiles ; for instance, the king's 
dog is omitted altogether. Three other tiles seem 
never to have been figured ; they represent a deer 
being chased by a horseman and dog and shot by 
a bowman. These figured tiles are disposed in two 
rows exactly south of the central pillar ; between 
them were some vestiges of an inscription ; one 
word, I thought was ABBAS.* (See figs. 17 to 25.) 

• I fear that the endeavour to protect the tiles by linoleum is not 
entirely successful. Their surface is turning to dust, and it was only by 
comparing duplicate tiles that I could make out the subjects. Accurate 
drawings of them should be made at once. The Chertsey tiles were 
made, it is believed, r. 1270. Although they followed the English 



A plan of the whole floor has been printed by 
H. Shaw. It is clear from the subjects that the 
tiles were specially designed for Westminster. 

One of the spandrels of the eastern wall-arcade 
is carved into a beautiful trellis of roses, and some 
n of the other spandrels are variations on 

j^ . the same motive. The naturalistic 

rendering ot this rose pattern is quite 
remarkable, and we may here best mention the 
profuse way in which roses are used as a decorative 
theme throughout the church. The exterior 
jambs of the door from the church to the cloister 
are set with roses ; so, also, are all the ground-floor 
arches of the end wall of the south transept, and 
the end wall of the north transept, and of the 
western aisle of the latter (Fig. 26). There are 
roses at the centres of some portions of the square 
diaper on the walls, and some of the bosses of the 
ambulatory are roses ; so also are those of the 
earliest part of the cloister. 

It is said that Eleanor of Provence, Queen ot 
Henry III., had a rose for a badge, also that 
the rose was one of the badges of Henry III.* 
Boutell says that the badge of Edward I. was 
a golden rose, "and from it, apparently, was 

versions of two Romances (Tristram and Richard), M. Paulin Paris 
thought that they were French, but as others of the same series were 
found at Halesowen, it seemed more likely that they were English. 
The resemblance to the Westminster tiles completes the proof ; some of 
the details are so much alike in both sets that they may both be 
designed by one artist. 

• ** Reliquary " 1884, but no evidence is offered. Ayloffe in Vet. 
Mon.y 1780. The use of badges at this early time is doubtful. 

D 49 


Fig. 19. — Tile from Chapter House floor 

Fig. 20. — Tile from Chapter House floor 


derived, but by what processes are unknown . . . 
the red rose of Lancaster.** Both Edward I. 
and Edmund, earl of Lancaster, were sons of 
Henry IIL and Eleanor, and the rose was used 
scores of times as a recurring decoration 
painted on the mouldings of Edmund's tomb.* 

Fig. 21. — ^Tile from the Chapter House floor 

Not only are there painted roses on his tomb, but 
one of the little shields on the south side hangs to 
an exquisitely carved rose-tree. The shield, if my 
memory is not at fault, is that of Provence. On 
the tomb of his wife, Aveline, roses are painted in 
the same way, alternating with the arms, and the 
arch is set around with carved roses. Again, in 

* Camden remarks, '' Edmund Crouchback, first earl of Lancaster, 
used a red rose wherewith his tomb at Westminster is adorned." 



Fig. 22. — ^Tilc from Chapter House floor 

23. — ^Tilc from Chapter House floor 



Fig. 24. — Tile from Chapter House floor 

Fig. 25. — Tile from Chapter House floor 



1240, Henry III. ordered "the Chamber of our 
Queen " at the Tower to be whitened and " newly 
painted with roses." We might suppose that an 
introduction of the *' Rose of Provence " by the 
queen would account for all this ; but we are told 
that Crouchback, who in 1272 married Blanche, 
widow of the Count of Champagne, and lived 
much at Provins, brought from 
j^' thence the roses, incorrectly called 
Provence roses, to England.* In the 
guide-book accounts of Provins we 
read that it has for centuries been 
celebrated for roses, improperly 
called Provence roses, which have a 
rich crimson hue, and they are said 
Fig. 26.— Rose to have been brought by Crusaders 
Decoration from the Holy Land.-f 

Henry III. decorated with roses his 
church which was begun in the same year that 
Edmund was born. For this there may be no 
other reason than that it was an epoch of rose 
culture and admiration ; of this there is abundant 
proof. Roses at this time were prized in gardens, 
were the fashionable flower for chaplets, and to 
this age belongs the Romaunt of the Rose. 
Amiens and other contemporary buildings in 
France have rose decorations. 

• Sunlcy's •* Memorials," and Diet. Nat Biog. 

t Thibault IV. of Champagne, it is said, brought from Syria the 
fiimons red or pnrple rose cultivated at Provins. C. Joret, '' La Rose 
dans TAntiquit^," &c., 1892. 



The rest of the Abbey buildings to the south of 
the church have been almost completely elucidated 
n f . by Mr. Micklethwaite. Over the vesti- 
^y •^' bule of the Chapter House ran the 
dormitory, with a little passage crossing 
the end of St. Faith's Chapel to the stair in the 
south-west corner of the south transept, the door 
of which may still be seen.* The spiral stair itself 
is shown in Wren's plan. 

The Refectory, originally a noble hall of Nor- 
man work, had a long timber roof. From the 
roof hung a large crown of lights, the fall of which 
is mentioned by Caxton. Over the high table was 
painted a great Majesty which seemed to reign 
over the assembled monks. The tables were set 
with cups and salts of silver. South of the Refec- 
tory stood the Misericord, Kitchen, and other 

In the Customs of Abbot Ware (1266), together 
with a full account of the daily life of the monks, 
there are many incidental references to the build- 
ings. We hear of the Guest-house of the Miseri- 
cord, the " Scriptoriae Domus " and the Sacristy. 
Also of the Lavatory by the Refectory door, and of 
an alteration in the kitchen by which it was put in 
better communication with the Refectory.-f 

The upper part of the gate tower through which 
access is obtained to the cloister from the Elms 
(Dean's Yard) was rebuilt several years ago. In 
the niches some stumps of figures remained until 
a comparatively recent time. It appears from a 
passage in " Camden's Remains " that images of 

• See Archaol, Journal^ 1876. t Bradshaw Society, 1904. 



the Confessor and a pilgrim occupied these posi- 
tions. This subject, repeated dozens of times in 
the painted and sculptured imagery of the Abbey, 
showed how the Confessor, being at Havering, had 
alms begged from him by St. John disguised as a 
pilgrim. The king, having nothing else, gave the 
ring from his finger. The story doubtless origi- 
nated as an explanation of the name of Edward's 
manor of Havering. Camden saw the relation, 
but inverted it, " Havering from taking the 

Immediately to the north of the Abbey stands 
the parish church of St. Margaret. It is said to 
have been built by the Confessor.* A twelfth- 
century deed of the Abbot's in the British Museum 
speaks of it as " in our cemetery.'* It was rebuilt 
by the Abbey and the merchants of the staple in 
the time of Edward I.-f — and again still later. 

Further to the north on the site of the present 
Guildhall stood the belfry which was completed 
rp, in 1253. This was a most remarkable 

ij jr structure, being an immense, massively 

^ ^^ built tower 75 ft. square and only 
about 60 ft. high, which was surmounted by a 
great leaded spire, on which, as we shall see, 
plumbers were engaged in 1249—53. It must have 
been begun concurrently with the church, if not 
earlier. I doubt whether this belfry ever became 
the actual property of the church ; it may, I think, 
in part at least, have been built to represent West- 
minster town in some sort of competition with 

• See Charter in Bcntlcy's " Cartulary." t Stow. 



the London bell-house by St. Paul's, Stow says 
that Henry HL, devising how he might extort 
money, in 1246 appointed a mart to be kept for 
fifteen days, during which time trade was to cease 
in London. Stow, when he tells us that this 
belfry (in the Little Sanctuary) was built for the 
use of St. Stephen's chapel, shows at least that he did 
not know that it had belonged to the Abbey. It 
was, he says, a strong clochard of stone and timber 
covered with lead, containing three great bells, 
usually rung at coronations and funerals ; the bells 
had been taken down and the spire had probably 
also been destroyed at the time he wrote. The 
stone tower, however, remained until 1750, when 
it was drawn and described by Stukely,* who says it 
was absurd to call it a belfry (not so now that we 
know of several such structures), but that there was 
profound ignorance as to its meaning. He, how- 
ever, states that it was built as an asylum for those 
who fled into Sanctuary. This seems to be the first 
statement of the " Sanctuary " theory, which has 
been repeated ever since with more and more 
detail, until Sir W. Besant tells us that some of the 
princes born in sanctuary were born here. Widmore, 
writing about 1750, says that the tower had been 
used for two hundred years as a cellar to a tavern, 
and was by some "imagined" to have been a 
chapel, but he found it called a Belfry in a charter 
of 1290, and it continued in use as a bell-tower till 
Islip built the towers of the church. A genera- 
tion before Stukely wrote, Strype had given a plan 
of the structure, and sought to identify it with a 

• " Archaeol.," vol. i., originals at Soc. Antiq. 




church of the Holy Innocents, mentioned in the 
time of Henry HL 

The Abbey church, with its whole Close, was 
the Sanctuary. When the monas- 
tery built houses within the Close, 
the tenements enjoyed its pri- 
vileges (thus the Holy Ground of 
one age was to become the 
" Alsatia " of another), and doubt- 
less the names of two streets, 
Broad Sanctuary and Little Sanc- 
tuary, arose in consequence. The 
latter happened to be close to the 
belfry, and that I suppose is the 
only original connection between 
them. The tower, like all belfries, 
was built very strongly so as to 
support a great timber bell-cage. 
The angles of the lower storey 
were masses of masonry 22 ft. 
square, and it was only destroyed 
at great expense. A guild had the 
bells in charge, one of which was 
Fig 27 —Ancient ^f immense size. They were taken. 
Belfry' which "s^t'^d Nordcn says, by Henry VUL be- 
on the N. side of fore his expedition to Boulogne, 
the Church In Van den Wyngaerde*s View 

of London appears a large leaded 
spire which, occupying the right position, could 
hardly have been anything else than this belfry. 
It resembled the thirteenth-century belfry which 
used to stand on the north side of Salisbury 
Cathedral ; and by putting together these indica- 


tions we can make a fair approximation to the 
form of the Westminster bell-house. (Fig, 27). 

How famous these bells were may be gathered 
from the narrative of Simon Simeonis, a travelling 
monk, who visited London and Westminster in 
1322. He says : " Beyond the walls, at the other 
end of the city, is the monastery of Black Monks 
called Westminster, in which all the kings of 
England are buried, amongst whom is the Lord 
Edward, the most Maccabaean king of the English, 
who, with the most Christian king, St, Louis of 
France, passed over the sea with a war host. Here 
are two bells, the first in the world for size and of 
admirable sound, and the monastery is close by the 
palace of the kings of England." Matthew Paris 
evidently considered that these bells deserved 
record along with the new church and the shrine 
of gold. See Fig. 40. 

The precincts are best described by Norden, 
c. 1 600 : " At the end of King's Street, within 
p . an old gate, lieth the Sanctuary, having 

three gates and a postern, whereof one 
leadeth from the Sanctuary into King's Street, 
the second into TothiU Street, the third into 
the Abbey yard and the Almonry, the postern 
into King ['s Palace ?]. It was called the Great 
Sanctuary in regard to a lesser which it in- 
cluded called the Little Sanctuary, wherein is a very 
ancient and old building and strong, now made a 
dwelling-house, sometime a tower, wherein was a 
bell of wonderful bigness weighing, as is reported, 
33,000 wt. and was rung only at coronations, 



which bell King Henry VIIL employed to other 
uses at his going to Boulogne. The Almonry is 
a place within the Gate-house towards the Abbey- 
yard. The Gate-house is a prison, not only for 
the City of Westminster but for the Shire. There 
are in the City the long Wool-staple and the round. 
Yet appeareth an old and large house above the 
stairs in the south-west angle of the round Wool- 
staple/'* The precinct was walled, or re-walled by 
Abbot Litlington who also built the gate toward 
Tothill.-f- Stow says that the gate was built by 
Walter de Warfield, the cellarer, in the time ot 
Edward III. ; I suppose he acted for Litlington. 
Some of the trees of the Close are shown in Van 
den Wyngaerde's drawing, and much of it remained 
a green cemetery down to the beginning of last 
century. The position of the walls and gates and 
the relation of the Church to the Palace are best 
shown on Sandford's Plan, 1685. ^^^ Figs, i 
and 2. 

Outside the walls and gates which shut it in 
there were the few houses of Tothill and Lang- 
ditch. J The principal entrance to the church by 
the north transept exactly faced the old King 
Street, which has been destroyed while these pages 
were being written. From the time of the Con- 
fessor to the time of Henry VII I. we may think of 

• MS. Harl., 570. 

t Bcntlcy's Cartulary. 

X The bridge over the mill stream was only discovered last year. 
See Architectural Rev,^ 1904. The Tothill Gate is figured in Stanley's 
" Memorials." A part of the King Street Gate, which seemed to be the 
work of Henry III., is shown by T. T. Smith. 


Westminster as a little town, half monastery, half 
palace. Westminster Hall, the Great Hall of the 
palace, now alone represents the group of royal 
buildings which once was gathered around it, as 
the church represents the monastery. These palace 
buildings may be sub-divided into four parts: 
(i) The Public Palace and Justice Hall ; (2) The 
King's Lodging, with its Painted Chamber covered 
all over with the work of Master Walter the 
Painter ; (3) St. Stephen's, the Palace Chapel, the 
Westminster parallel of St. Louis' Ste. Chapelle in 
Paris, with its attached cloisters and vicars' 
houses ; (4) The Exchequer Buildings, the Court 
of Star Chamber, and the Clock Tower. All 
these buildings with their gardens were tightly 
packed within a walled enclosure between the east 
end of the church and the river bank. So far as I can 
gather it was probably Knut who first made West- 
minster his residence. His successor, Harold, was 
the first of the English kings to be buried in 
the Abbey church.* Later, the proximity of the 
the palace reacted on the Abbey, and the church 
became, in a manner, the great royal chapel 
attached to the palace, much as St. Mark's is 
related to the Doges' palace, and the Dom at 
Aachen to the palace of Charlemagne. Both 
the rebuildings of the Abbey by the Confessor, and 
by Henry HL, were paid for out of their own 

• It is evident from its name, Westminster, that the Abbey existed 
before the palace. Probably one of the kings took to staying at the 
Abbey, and eventually built a house close by. As early as the twelfth 
century it was said that it was at Westminster that Knut rebuked the 
tide. (Gaimar.) 



purses. It is occasionally called the Great Chapel 
of the Palace, and a right of user was retained in 
more than one part. The Chapel of the Pyx was 
the Kings' treasury, the Chapter House was the 
meeting place of Parliament, and the Confessor's 
Chapel was the Royal burial place. The Abbey 
belongs to the State in a far greater degree than 
does one of the Cathedrals, and the State has 
continued from time to time to contribute to its 

Westminster, after the time of Henry III., must 
have looked like one of those cities of romance 
now only to be found in illuminated manuscripts. 

Fig. 28. — Arms of Henry III., from the 
Chapter House floor 



The North Transept : Rose Window : The Gable : Middle Stage : 
Porches : South Transept : The Chevet : The Choir and Nave : West 
Front : Lantern : Care and Repair. 

" // // archiucfs architecture.^^ 

W. Morris on the New Casing of the 
North Transept. 

The exterior of the church has been subjected to 
such a series of injuries and " improvements '* that 
^, hardly one old stone of it remains upon 

»r , another. The original form of the 

rp once so beautiful North Transept, with 

^ ^ its three great portals, had to a large ex- 
tent disappeared under a layer of alterations even 
before the great restoration (1875-90) which made 
all false. 

The Westminster transepts were of such extra- 
ordinary interest as showing the progress of London 
building in the middle of the thirteenth century, 
that it is worth some trouble to gather up the 
evidence as to their original form before they 
were made over in the " Early English " of to- 

Without being a student of records it is impos- 
sible to tell what is even an echo of the ancient 
work. The expert re-editing of old buildings, with 
all its pretensions to science, comes in practice to a 
muddling up of so much copy of old work, so much 
conjecture^ and so much mere caprice^ without 

leaving any record as to which is which. This 



actual obliteration of authentic remnants and 
evidence is what we call Restoration, 

One sculptured stone, the boss of the right-hand 
porch ; one piece of moulded stone, a span long, in 
one of the statue corbels ; the soffits behind the 
arches of the first stage ; and some of the plain 
wall-stones in the recesses here and in the porches, 
is all of the ancient exterior of the North Transept 
that would be recognised by Henry the king and 
Henry the mason as having formed part of their 

Up to thirty years ago the front, as left by Wren, 
remained intact. An excellent engraving in " Neale " 
gives the best representation of this front as it was 
in 1816. The work of re-casting the porches was 
commenced before the death of Sir, G. G. Scott, 
In September 1884 scaffolding was put up to the 
whole of the North Transept ; in 1886 an appli- 
cation for aid was made to Parliament. Mr, Fowler, 
in replying on behalf of the Government to 
criticism, stated that he had received a letter from 
the Dean saying that " this is no question ot 
beautifying the exterior, but is simply to prevent it 
from coming down, and it is for that, and nothing 
else, that the funds are required,"* Possibly the 
public money was required for necessary repairs so 
as to release all other funds for beautifying, possibly 
no public grant was made, and having less money 
a more ambitious scheme may have been thought 
of ; however this may be, when the close hoarding, 
which I well remember shut out any view of what 
was being done, was taken away about 1892, it was 

* Timesy June 17, 1886. Compare below, p. 228. 


clear that the whole transept had been very 
completely " beautified." Restoration schemes are 
now conducted so far as possible in secret, 
on the principle that dead buildings tell no 

At the latter end of the fourteenth century a 
large porch, which I shall caU the Galilee, was built in 
front of the central doorway of the North Transept. 
In 1654, when Hollar made an etching of the 
front, this Galilee was still standing. It had three 
long windows in the gable, and a little door be- 
neath. It has been suggested that its purpose was 
to shelter the sculptures of the central door, but 
this does not, I think, satisfactorily explain its 
erection and its destruction. (Fig. 73). 

Early in the reign of Richard II., in 1 378, a man 
who had taken sanctuary in the church was killed 
in the choir, and the church thus desecrated was 
closed for a time.* Now there cannot be a doubt 
that the Galilee was added to the church in the 
reign of Richard II., although Dart*s statement 
that the king's arms and badge were sculptured on 
it seems to be based on misreading Sandford, who 
spoke of the north porch of Westminster Hall. 
A passage in Capgrave*s "Chronicle'' which relates 
how, in 1 410, a knight was compelled " to take 
Westminster (sanctuary),'* and " there so straited 
that he dwelt in the porch of the church both day 
and night," suggests that the Galilee was built 
with reference to the right of sanctuary after the 
desecration of the church. 

I shall now bring together some notes upon the 

• Sec Sunlcy'i *< Memorials." 

I 65 


authorities for the recovery of the best evidences as 
to the original forms of the North Transept. 

(A) In Van den Wyngaerde*s "View of London" 
(c. 1560) there is a sketch of the church which 
shows the pinnacles of the four great buttresses of 
the North Front and a fifth pinnacle on the apex 
of the gable. A similar pinnacle is also shown on 
the south transept gable. 

(B) The little and very rough engraving of 
the church on Speed's "Map of London" (c. 1610) 
shows that the pinnacles of the transepts, except- 
ing the two flanking the north gable, had been 
replaced by low, leaded, turret roofs. The para- 
pets, which both Speed and Hollar show as em- 
battled, may have been re-made at the same time ; 
they usually are among the earliest things to 

(C) Hollar's etching of 1654 is detailed and evi- 
dently accurate. It shows that the statues were 
still in place, and it is probable that the front was 
in the main uninjured, save by weather, although 
everything proves that it was much decayed. A 
little etching by Lodge (1649-89), and two or three 
smaller views by Hollar, confirm the accuracy of 
the large etching. In the Pepys Collection at 
Cambridge there is a rough original sketch by 
Hollar, which shows the houses which stood in 
front of the North Aisle. 

(D) In 1 683 Keepe described the North Front as 
"a ruinous building . . . a skeleton. . .shrivelled 

• Some repairs at the Abbey were executed in 1600. Sec B.M. 
Add. 34195. Norden, c, 1600, says of the pinnacles of the but- 
tresses that many, *' through antiquity, have lost their form." 


by the north wind and the fretting df the smoke ot 
sea-coal." He goes on to describe " a most noble 
door, with a porch thereto, and on each side lesser 
porticoes, one of which only was an entrance.*' 
The porch had been called " Solomon's Porch." 
" Therein were placed the statues of the twelve 
Apostles at full proportion, besides a multitude of 
lesser saints and other devices." The Galilee 
porch must have been cleared away by this time ; 
it is not shown on Sandford's plans of 1685. As 
a sum of money for repairs was set aside by Dean 
Dolben in 1662, and as repairs usually mean 
destruction, the Galilee probably disappeared then. 

(E) A print by CoUings, engraved in 1689, was 
probably made to correct Hollar's view in respect 
to these alterations. It shows that certain modifi- 
cations had been made to the small gables above 
the original porches, and that the beautiful arcaded 
gallery beneath the great Rose had been replaced 
by a row of plain arches (later called by Wren 
** the little Doric passage "). Several of the sculp- 
tures, however, still remained. This print is, in 
the main, a poor copy of Hollar's, amended in 
respect of the new work, but some of the copied 
details are much corrupted. 

(F) Some time before Wren's alterations were 
made to the North Transept, an engraving was 
made of the Front for Strype's edition of Stow. It 
shows the Transept in the same state as CoUings' 
print ; while evidently based on Hollar, the details 
have obviously been redrawn from the building, 
and it is a valuable supplement to Hollar's view. 

(G) From 1 697 till his death Wren was " chief 



director" of the works of the church. In 171 1 
Parliament made a grant of ^^4000. Wren, in 
171 3, "considering his advanced age," drew up a 
statement of what had been done and his further 
proposals. Much of the east end and south side 
had by this time been recased. " A great part ot 
the future expense " (he reports) " will be in the 
North Front and in the Great Rose Window there, 
which being very ruinous was patched up some 
years since, before I was concerned, and must now 
be new done. I have presented a proper design 
for it." * 

The Rose had been stopped with plaster, he 
says, but should be rebuilt with Portland stone, to 
answer to the South Window, rebuilt forty years 
before,-!* the staircases at the corners should be new 
ashlared, and pyramids set on the pinnacles " con- 
formable to the old style." He speaks of " the 
little Doric passage patched on before the Great 
Window " and of a design he had made more in 
agreement with the original, "without modern 
mixtures to show my own inventions." 

(H) While the " restoration " of the upper part 
of the Transept, undertaken in 1884, was in full 
blast, a document of the highest authority was 
published.:}; This was a careful measured drawing 

* In the Bodleian there are copies of the accounts from 1698 to 
171 3 with full details. (Gough Coll. 18,051.) The epitaph of Ed. 
Tufhelly buried in the south cloister, 1719^ speaks of his having repaired 
the south and east parts. There was an Act of Parliament for the works. 

t Say 1670, about the time, I suppose, that the outer porch was 
removed. (See Parentalia.) 

X Building Netvs, Oct. 26, 1888, The text refers to the restora- 
tion then in progress. '^ The work seems to be devoted to rebuilding 


of the front as existing before 171 3. It was 
probably made by Dickenson, the surveyor to the 
church, who acted under Wren's general advic<5. 
On a flap is shown the scheme for the alterations, 
which, when carried out, made the front into what 
some of us remember — a front which still retained 
a good deal of original work, and where the altera- 
tions often reflected in some degree what they 
replaced. The smile of the old work shone as 
it were through an ungraceful veil, and the whole 
front still preserved a certain lightness and spring. 
To trace the evidence, and to imagine the old 
features, was a problem of fascinating interest. 

Wren's alterations to the part now under con- 
sideration (I shall call them Wren's, although 
they were probably designed in regard to detail 
by Dickenson) were undertaken about 17 19, for the 
flap is signed by Wren, " I doe approve of this 
design, 171 9." This drawing of the then existing 
front agrees with the prints above referred to 
(E. and P.), but, being an accurate elevation to 
scale, in supplementing and confirming them it 
gives them much greater value. The large Rose 
Window, and the panelling of the gable above it, 
are shown to have been of the most beautiful 
geometrical tracery. This drawing while perfectly 
explaining and harmonising the small rough repre- 
sentations by Hollar, and in Strype's Stow, shows 
that before 171 9 the window and gable tracery 
were, without doubt, genuine original work, 

the buttresses and recasing parts of the facade, and we hear that a new 
design has been prepared for replacing the Rose Window. The cloise 
hoarding, however, prevents a proper inspection." 



Further, it appears that when the new design 
shown on the flap was prepared, it was not in- 
tended to alter the great Rose immediately ; the 
Rose, the filling of the gable, the windows in the 

Fig. 29. — One of Four Tiles from Chapter House floor, 
representing a Rose Window 

recesses of the first stage, and the doorways are 
shown as left without alteration, the flap placed 
over the survey of the then existing front being 
cut away to expose those portions of the under 
drawing. The portions to be renewed were the 
faces of the buttresses, the pinnacles, stair turrets, and 
the gallery beneath the Rose. Mr. Lee, the owner 

of this drawing, has several others which he has 



allowed me to examine. Amongst them is a large 
detail for the Rose which was soon to replace the 
early one, to be itself destroyed in the 1884 
campaign. A model of it is also preserved in the 

Fig. 30. — Ancient Rose Window of N. Transept. 
From a Drawing by Wren 

triforium of the Abbey. From a date which was 
in the glazing of the window itself, we know that 
it was completed in 1722.* The window of 
Wren's, while poor and thin compared with the 

• Some interesting lead pipe-heads torn down from the North Tran- 
sept at the recent restoration were also dated 1722, when, from this 
evidence, we may say Wren's work was completed. 



earlier one shown on the survey, yet preserved the 
tradition of the old one in some important points ; 
the spandrels of the square in which it was placed 
were pierced and glazed ; the pattern on the whole 
indeed was largely a simplification of the old 
window. Wren may have discovered the basis of 
an old pinnacle on the apex of the gable, for he 
added such a one. (See A. above). 

Thus disguised, but not destroyed, the old front 
was handed on to our day. On a copy of Middle- 
ton's large lithograph of 1801, in the Crowle Col- 
lection, some one (probably Carter) has noted what, 
early in the last century, appeared to be of ancient 
work ; the old work being correctly described as ot 
Reigate stone, a safe criterion. This included the 
gable with its beautiful filling of tracery, the 
windows in the recesses of the first stage, and the 
jambs and arches of the doorways. 

When the close screen which concealed the pro- 
gress of the last " restoration '* was removed it was 
found that all this had been swept away, together 
with Wren's work. All was new. 

VioUet-le-Duc* shows that in France the large 
circular windows went through the following steps 
P in their development : They were at 

jr^. , first circular and contained within round 

rear arches. In the middle of the 
thirteenth century at Reims " where they pushed 
the principles of the architecture of the Guilds a 
routrance^^ they pierced the spandrel between the 
Rose and the pointed vault behind and about it, 

• Art. Rose. 


so that it became a pointed window with rose 

In the He de France the Roses of the thirteenth 
century were usually framed up in squares. That 
of the south transept of Notre Dame (begun 1257) 
had the lower spandrels pierced, but the upper ones 
were filled with blank tracery because the vault 
behind blocked them. " But about the same epoch 
they learnt to isolate the wall ribs of the vaults from 
the inside of the wall, thus leaving between the 
vaulting ribs and the Rose Window a space so that the 
upper spandrels of the square might also be pierced. . . . 
Such is the Rose of the Chapel of St. Germain 
en Laye." — built about 1 240. Such were the roses 
of Westminster Abbey wrought about 1255. Will it 
be believed that in the late re-editing of the north 
window the traditional form in this respect as 
handed down by Wren was departed from ? Not- 
withstanding the square inside and out, and the 
isolated wall rib of the vaulting contrived for the 
very purpose of making that square available, the 
spandrels have been filled in solid in this curious 
caprice of " restoration/' Compare the South Rose 
where the proper tradition has been continued. 

In respect to these pierced spandrels, and the 
resulting square form, the Rose at Westminster stood 
in the very van of Gothic development, and except 
at St. Germain it was difficult to match it at so 
early a time. The resemblance of the tracery of 
the old Rose at Westminster to a dozen French 
examples is most remarkable. It was a typical 
window of French form at the moment when it 
was built. The west Rose at Reims {c. 1250-60) 



may be said to be exactly like it in pattern of the 
wheel, except for its having twelve rays instead of 
sixteen. The south Rose at Paris is like Reims, 
with additional foiling, and is framed in a square. 
The north Rose at Rouen {c. 1280) is so exactly 
like the Westminster window in its open spandrels, 
number of rays, foiling, and indeed in every respect, 
that it is difficult to suppose that it may be an 
independent development and not a copy of some 
original from which the Westminster window was 
also derived. The north transept Rose at Tours 
is also almost identical, and this may be earlier than 

At Paris and Rouen the pierced spandrels serve 
to unite the Roses to tiers of windows below them. 
The same intention may be seen in the South Tran- 
sept at Westminster, and also at old St. Paul's (east 
end, begun in 1256), where a row of lights below 
a great Rose in an open square, going up behind the 
vault, went far towards that turning of the whole 
wall into window which seemed to be an aim of the 
Gothic schools* (Fig. 6). The instance of St. Paul's 
would put the key-stone to the evidence (if fur- 
ther evidence was necessary) that the original Rose, 
window of Westminster is correctly represented 
on the drawing prepared for Wren. The design 
of the east Rose at St. Paul's, and the windows 
beneath it — as shown in Dugdale and imitated in 
a way at St. Catherine Cree — was without doubt a 
developed copy of the Westminster windows. 

Scott had considered the question of the original 

* The same thing had been earlier attempted in the north transept 
of Chartres. 


form of the Rose windows, and came to the con- 
clusion that both the old ones resembled to some 
extent that now in the South Transept, which he 
thought was a fifteenth-century version of the 
original form (Fig. 6). He endeavoured in a figure 
to " translate " the design back into an earlier style, 
and he pointed out that the result so obtained was 
exactly like the Rose windows represented on some 
early tiles in the Chapter House. His design, so 
arrived at, and these tiles agree in a most remark- 
able way with the window shown in the drawing 
made for Wren, of which Scott was ignorant, so 
again it is evident that the drawing must represent 
the thirteenth-century window, and that the south 
window does continue the form of the original 
windows as he supposed. Scores of these window 
tiles still exist, and I have verified Scott's repre- 
sentation of them as being entirely correct. They 
are 14 in. square (in four pieces), and might have 
been made from the original drawing for the actual 
window (Fig. 29). The building of the transept 
windows was probably reached about 1258, and in 
that year, as the accounts show, the tile floor of the 
Chapter House was being laid down. Again, 
although the representations of the Rose in Dugdale 
(Hollar) and Strype are small, it is quite clear that 
they represent the same form as Scott arrived at. 
My Fig. 30 is in the main based on Dickenson's 

One other minute point in regard to the north 
Rose — Scott pointed out thattheheadsof the window 
lights generally were uncusped, but he could not 
forbear (notwithstanding the tile) to cusp the lights 



of the Rose in his translation. The original, as 
shown on Dickenson's drawing, was uncusped^ a sure 
mark of early date. Without Dickenson's drawing, 
Scott, by taking thought, had reached to a know- 
ledge of the form of this window, and his critical 
conclusion should not have been set aside. Above 
all. Wren's new window should not have been 

The tracery filling the north gable, as shown by 
Dickenson, was preserved by repair until it was 
Th C hi ^^stroyed and something quite different 
put in its place, at Mr. Pearson's restora- 
tion. When I first saw the church with architectural 
eyes, this tracery interested me more than anything 
else, so that I made a careful drawing of it (Fig. 31). 
It was probably the most remarkable example of 
early tracery in England, but it fell accurately into 
the sequence at Westminster, its pattern being that 
of a bay of the north cloister slightly developed. 
This work of original form was swept away to 
substitute for it what appears to be a reading of 
Hollar's etching, which was only a short-hand 
note, thoroughly good for a gable an inch high, 
but not of course more accurate than the actual 
work from which it was sketched. In the old 
work the large foiled circles were pierced to form 
lights to the roof; in the "scientific restoration" 
they are blank and blind and foolish. The restorers 
seem never to have heard of criticism. They ought, 
one would think, to know old forms when they see 
them. They ought, if anxious for such daring 

feats as enlarging Hollar's etchings into stone, to ask 


themselves where they will stop. If the real gable 
was to be made to agree with the tiny sketch made 

Fig. 31. — Gable of N. Transept. Ancient 

forniy from a Drawing made before the 

last great restoration 

from it^ why not the clerestory and the triforium ? 
Are all the remnants of buildings shown in 
" Monasticon " to be re-edited where the original 



work IS not thought to agree with little prints a 
few inches over ? 

That this gable tracery lasted on to our time in 
its original form is put beyond doubt by comparing 
Dickenson's drawing with Strype and Dugdale. 
But without this evidence, how could they have 
thought that such beautiful forms of 1250—60 got 
up there ? Were they of Wren's style ? Why 
not have left them alone ? 

Such is scientific restoration ; but let me not be 
misunderstood. Now it is done don't alter it ; I 
would not meddle with even the restorations of a 
restorer. The north gable as is stands has already 
more than a dozen years of antiquity (" Early 
English " they call it !). It is now the nearest we 
can have to the original work. 

Dickenson's drawing shows parts of the two 
early pinnacles which flanked the gable, and the 
flying buttresses which contain within them stair- 
cases, which are also shown to have been original 
by the fact that the early entrances to them at the 
top of the spiral stairs still exist. 

The gallery under the Rose has been restored, in 
respect to the number of bays, in accordance with 
M'AAl Wren's work. I have nothing to say 
^ against this ; indeed continuity is what we 

^ ' should advocate in opposition to all 

" chopping and change." It must be pointed out, 
however, as we are trying to arrive at the early 
forms, that before Wren's time there were four bays 
in the centre and two in each of the flanks. This 
was the number of bays in the " little Doric 


passage," and when we find that Hollar, the only 
first authority for the original arcade, shows this 
number of bays, we must decide that the evi- 
dence rules that there was this number of arches,* 
This evidence is confirmed in three ways, as 
follows : 

The greater number of bays necessitates detail 
much smaller in scale than found elsewhere in the 

The flanking spaces are just half of the central 
space, and dividing them 2:4:2 was the natural 
course. At present the division is 3 : 5 : 3 which 
makes the flanks still more pinched as to scale than 
the centre. 

At Amiens the prototype of this front, as will 
be shown, the similar arcade is divided 2:4:2. 

This gallery is carried by four arches, composed 
as I : 2 : I filling the same spaces immediately 
below the gallery ; these arches are distorted in a 
bold and remarkable way so that their heads 
shall make correct centres^ evidently with a view 
that these centres would come under strongly 
marked central lines of the arcades, and com- 
bine with them in one composition. (See 
Fig. 32.) 

On the inside of the transept a similar system ot 
bay composition is followed. 

The alteration of the North Front is indeed very 
important ; it alters the entire storey arrangement 
of the front thus — 

• If independent evidence for this is required, see Dart's version of 
the Hollar print. 



OU. Netv. 

Gable Gable 

Rose Rose 

(Gallery and Gallery 

Windows Windows 

Porches Porches 

That is, this middle stage of the front is now 
made up of two weak stages, instead of one strong 
one comprising two parts. 

Wren, as if feeling that something was required 
if the two sub-divisions were not combined^ pushed 
the gallery up some two feet from the top of the 
eccentric arches beneath. Vestiges of the caps and 
bases of the ancient arcade were found on the sides 
of the buttresses at the restoration; the present 
arcade, in respect to height and level, represents the 
old one, and the openings through the buttresses 
behind it are original. The passage above this 
arcade is also at the original level, and the openings 
through the buttresses pass under original Purbeck 
slabs which define the width of the buttresses. 
The diapering of the spandrels is entirely modern. 
The " eccentric arches " had been hacked back by 
Wren, and cased, but the springers were found and 
are said to be still in use. The soffits of these 
arches are also ancient, so the forms of the old work 
are here closely represented. The outer limbs of 
the lateral arches rested on sculptured heads (from 
Wren's time at least, and I suspect originally) not 
on single shafts as at present. The walling of the 
recesses is in great part old, but the heads of the 
windows in the lateral compartments have been 

altered as to design. When I first drew them, 



about 1875, they had, as shown by Dickenson, 
trefoil-arches instead of arches with cusps. (Fig. 32.) 

Fig. 32. — North Transept. Recess above right- 
hand porchy ancient form 




The tympanum of the Great Door was removed 
at the same time as the Rose (r. 1722). The 
filling shown in Dickenson's survey 
agrees with CoUings' engraving, 1689, 
and was certainly the original thirteenth-century 
work. (Fig. 33.) I judge this by the design, and 
Wren would not have had occasion to alter more 
recent work. His (or Dickenson's) design for what 
took its place exists in Mr. Lee's Collection. The 
old tympanum was sub-divided into tracery which, 
doubtless, held sculptures possibly of the Life of 

F 81 


Christ, as at Higham Ferrars, but more probably of 
the Last Judgment.* The sheltered parts of the side 
porches were little altered by Wren ; indeed, they 
came down to us until yesterday, tolerably intact. 

Fig. 33. — North Transept. Diagram of form of 
Ancient Porch 

Carter (in Gentleman's Magazine) pointed out that 
though the front had been " reformed " by those 
who had " the presumption to improve the work 
of our ancient artists," yet the eastern of the three 
porches remained in its original state. 

Scott, twenty years before his reformatory works 
were begun, said that the doorways retained a num- 
ber of mouldings *' in the original stone,'' which 


* See Appendix, p. 361 , and below, p. 85. 


contained remnants of carved foliage, "like the 
doorway to the Chapter House . . . the tympana 
of the smaller openings [side porches] still retain 
their original stone, which are decorated with 
circular panels." * 

Scott here guarantees the work for which he 
afterwards substituted a copy. Judging from an 
old photograph, I should say that the " copy " is 
generally " correct " in the eastern porch and the 
sides of the western. Mr. Lee has a drawing 
which shows the circles filling up the side arches 
(r. 1715—20.) A little plain ancient walling still 
remains in these porches. Some of the statue 
corbels were replaced by Scott : signs of filling by 
Wren show that they had originally existed, and 
were cut out by him. In the eastern or blind 
porch, about a quarter of one is preserved. The 
vaulting of these side porches is " correct," and 
the boss of the western opening is original and 
beautiful. A thirteenth-century scroll of foliage of 
finest style, " completely undercut with lions and 
birds at intervals to give variety," which belonged 
to Cottingham, and was described as from " the 
Door of N. Aisle of Nave," may have belonged 
to these porches. Compare the lions of the 
capital on the left of Chapter House door. The 
new tympanum of the central porch speaks for itself, 
the angels in medallions up the soffits are copied 
from the interior, although from Wren's time at 
least, there was a row of circles here, which 
suggested the " treatment." The authority for the 
gables was Hollar's etching ; a few stones as evi- 

• "Gleanings." 



dence for the deep slopes at the back were found 
at the re-building. Neale pointed out that the 
arches over the porches were struck from centres 
above the springing line, and contracted before 
they reached the caps — were, in fact, slightly 
" horseshoe," as we say. 

The niches on the face of the buttresses between 
the porches had trefoil heads, and were without 
canopies beneath them (such as Scott added) and 
Dickenson's survey shows that this was the original 
form. Wren's principal work was on the fronts of 
the buttresses and the pinnacles above. Hollar, 
who represents the buttresses of the choir correctly, 
with niches above and plain slopes beneath, shows 
similar niches to the transept front at r^^ first stage ^ 
the buttresses above that having plain slopes. The 
plain slopes were shown by Dickenson, but the 
niches of the first stage had disappeared. The but- 
tress slopes of Hollar's view agree also so completely 
with those of the South Transept, which have under- 
gone little alteration, that his accuracy is entirely 

Dickenson's drawing shows that the mid-post of 

the central door had a statue corbel similar to those 

in the ground-storey niches, which the early 

engravings show carried statues. The engravings 

show four other statues, occupying the niches in 

the buttress faces above the porches. There are 

also two niches of the largest size in the jambs of 

the central door, which must have contained large 

statues like the lateral niches. Keepe says of 

" Solomon's Porch " that it was adorned with " the 

statues of the Twelve Apostles at full proportion." 


Hatton in 1708 says "there remain six below and 
four above." CruU (171 1) says: "this portico 
still retained below two of these admirable statues, 
besides three others quite defaced, also two above 
each of the side porches." Hollar shows these 
last four standing in the blanks by the windows in 
the side recesses. All these statues disappeared in 
the repairs of 1719-22. Dart (1733) says : "this 
stately portico is now lately beautified, and the 
time-eaten sculpture and masonry pared away." 
The statue on the mid-post of the doorway would 
have been Christ blessing. The Apostles on either 
hand call for this, and reference to Amiens con- 
firms this view. In the Quatrefoil of the tymp- 
anum would have been the Majesty. At Amiens 
scenes from the Last Judgment accompany such a 
figure, and this also was probably followed at 
Westminster. At Amiens, again, there is a figure 
below the Christ of the door-post which used to 
be called David, but is now thought to be Solomon. 
Did such a figure at Westminster give rise to the 
name Solomon's Porch ? 

According to Wren, the Rose of the South Tran- 
sept was renewed about 1 670. The form of the one 
o . f then inserted was so incontestably of the 

^ type of c. 1 400 that the one it replaced 

^ ' was probably of that date. Carter who 
watched the renewal of the renewed (and said it 
was unnecessary) in 18 14, reports that the one then 
put in was copied from it with fidelity.* This 
window of 1814 (Fig. 6) has itself now been 

* See his engraving of the older one. 



destroyed. New glass was put in as a memorial 
about 1900, and it was thought well to make all 
new "while they were about it/* The same 
opportunity was taken to carve some new coats-of- 
arms over the window outside — nothing was here 

I write with a photograph of the S. Transept, 
madeabout 1865, before me;it shows all the four pin- 
nacles capped by the low sixteenth-century leaded 
roofs shown in Speed's engraving of 1610. These 
interesting and — supposing that the original pin- 
nacles had fallen — most reasonable coverings were 
torn off, and " correct '* ecclesiasticisms stuck up in 
their places about 1870. The gable itself was bare 
in 1865. The existing buttress slopes agree with 
those shown in Dickenson's survey of the North 
Front — a confirmation for both. This South Front 
has suffered, but, below the Rose, it has never been 
" done up fine " like the North Front, and remains 
therefore much as it was when Wren left it, and 
substantially the old thing in its lines. The gable- 
filling was, I believe, originally similar to that of the 
north gable, but there is very little evidence to go 
upon. The etching of this front in Dugdale, by 
King, seems to be compiled from Hollar's North 
View. The best authority is a smaller view by 
Hollar, which shows the gable-filling just as he 
shows the north gable also in a small view. 

The largest extant portion of the thirteenth- 
century exterior work is three or four yards square 
about the eastern door entering the South Transept. 
The doorway itself has been much injured, but by 

comparing it with the corresponding door of th? 


North Transept (which had been blocked up till 
1896, and is now opened out, although the nlling 
was probably mediaeval and done c. 1400 when the 
chapel was formed) the original form of both can 
be fairly made out on paper. The outer moulded 
order exists at the south door, and fragments of the 
inner carved one at the north. The pattern of one set 
of caps at the south door can just be traced, and here 
the two marble shafts of each jamb are in position, 
but a third had been added, taking the place of the 
roll moulding of the jamb of the north door. In 
the latter two beautiful carved caps of French 
fashion have been left untouched. 

The east end has been so defaced by time and 
blinded by violent handling that it is difficult to 
rpt imagine what must have been its first 

^, graceful beauty. Some work to this 

portion was begun by Dean Williams 
1 620-1 650, and when Hollar's View was made 
all the parapets of the chapels and pinnacles of the 
buttresses had been thrown down. These eastern 
buttresses must have been originally furnished 
above with niches and statues like the eastern 
bays of the nave. In Hatton's "New View," 
(1708), after describing the nave buttresses and 
their statues, it is said that " there were also 
several figures on the buttresses of the east side 
of the church which in reparation thereof are 
rebuilt plain." Wren began his work of cutting 
down and recasing at the east window about 1 697. 
The jamb-shafts, and arch-mouldings of the win- 
dows have also been obliterated in the general 



coarse recasing of this part, so that only the 
general disposition of forms remains. 

About 1628, the great buttresses of the west bays 
of nave, north side, " which were almost crumbled 
Th Ch ' ^^ ^^^^ " were " re-edified with durable 

, j^ materials '* by Dean Williams " and 
beautified with elegant statues." * These 
bays have again been repaired, but some of the 
original Reigate stone has been suffered to remain 
in the wall spaces. Carter in 1808 described the 
state of the thirteenth-century bays just west of the 
crossing, and engraved the third bay. The battle- 
ments, cornices, pinnacles, niches, and the mould- 
ings and shafts of the windows had been " havocked," 
he says, by Wren ; but the triforium stage re- 
mained unaltered and Carter engraved a detail of 
this — a valuable record. An engraving of 1 8 1 8 in 
" Neale," gives even a more accurate general view 
of these bays. Blore began the complete recasing 
of these bays, which are now a sort of full-size 
model of what the original work must have been 
(except niches and pinnacles, which have lost all 
elegance), but every positive link with the past is 
swept away.-f- The statues in the niches, outside 
the choir, had been removed before Dart wrote : 
their broken fragments were then " laid in the roof 
above Henry VII.'s chapel." They were ulti- 
mately buried, I believe, in the north green some- 
where. Hatton says they were of " princes." 

• See Stanley. 

t Blore was at work on the W. side of N. Transept in 1835. 
Scott was appointed in 1845. 


An invaluable document for the form of the bays 
of Henry HI.'s choir is the large model, now in 
the triforium, prepared to show Wren's (or Dicken- 
son's) central tower. One bay of this accurately 
shows the details before alterations, including the 
shafts to the windows and the niches on the north 
buttresses (for which compare Neale and Carter). 
This model also shows two blank lancets which 
filled out the space between the clerestory windows 
and the fliers of the buttresses ; these have dis- 
appeared entirely, but vestiges of similar lancets 
have been found on the south side in the recent 
restoration. The evidence of Wren's model, in 
this respect, had not I believe been noticed. Before 
the early recasings of the eastern limb similar blank 
arches may have existed there also. Altogether 
a complete paper-restoration can be compiled for 
the bays of the choir. 

Much of the south side remained, until its 
" thorough restoration " in 1882—92, as it had been 
left by Wren's heavy hand. The clerestory wall- 
ing was almost entirely the original Reigate stone 
of the fair greeny-grey colour, now only to be seen 
here and there in a few patches. On the bench 
of the north walk of cloister in 1899 rested a frag- 
ment of a thirteenth-century Purbeck capital from a 
window muUion. If it came, as I believe, from the 
south clerestory, it is enough, with the evidence it 
gives of the fixing of the shaft beneath it, to show 
that the window columns were marble, as, I believe, 
was every shaft of the early work. 



At the Dissolution, the West Front was far from 
complete. Hollar accurately shows its state, and 
^ Wren reports how the gable in his 

p time was still only of weather boarding. 

The porch is the only original work 
left. The west window, Wren says, was in a feeble 
state, and the work about it was renewed, being 
completed c. 1735. The heightening of the towers 
was not Wren's work. About a dozen years after 
his death, Ralph writes (1736) : "There is a 
rumour that the Dean and Chapter still design to 
raise the towers." The Grub Street Journal^ i735> 
had said that Hawksmoor was to do this, but he 
died in 1736. The work seems to have been done 
about 1740-2, Papworth supposes by John James, 
who succeeded Dickenson in 1725 and died 1746. 
Considerable repairs to the West Front were done 
about 1898— 1902. 

We shall see that the tower over the choir is 

mentioned in 1274, and, again, in the will of 

rp, Henry is called the Lantern. It 

J is probable that it was never completed. 

When Wren reported on the state of the 

church he pointed out that the piers of the crossing 

were bent by the thrust of the arcades, and argued 

that the carrying up of a central tower would, by 

weighting these piers, increase their stability. He 

proposed a scheme for a tall steeple, and some work 

in preparation for it was probably undertaken. A 

ceiling over the crossing was destroyed by fire in 

1803, but, together with the stone-work which 

appears outside, it was replaced directly after. 


Carter, who saw the fire, reports that the repairs 
to the crossing were nearly complete in 1804. 
"The groins were something like Wren's, de- 
stroyed by the fire." * Even before Wren's time 
the ceiling here was of a temporary kind. In re- 
commending the erection of a central tower Wren 
wrote : " It was plainly intended originally to 
have had a steeple, the beginnings of which appear 
on the corners of the Cross, but left off before 
they rose so high as the ridge of the roof, and 
the vault of the choir under it is but lath and plaster 
and now rotten." Wren's description of the begin- 
ning of piers agrees exactly with what is shown 
in the smaller views by Hollar, where we see 
gusset pieces in the valleys roofed over in a tem- 
porary way. A low octagonal lantern, probably 
of wood covered with lead, is shown complete on 
the view of the church (a mere symbol rather than 
a representation), given on the " Islip Roll " ; and 
Keepe tells us that Islip designed " a stately tower 
and lantern " for a goodly chime of bells, but 
found the pillars too weak. It is probable that 
the vault here was never completed in stone, for 
if it had been some evidence would have survived. 

How different it would have been with the 

Abbey church if, instead of all the learned and 

^ , ignorant experiments to which it has 

Care and ^ u- : j -.u- r u 

P . been subjected, this ever fresh energy 

^ * in pulling down and setting up, there 

had been steadily carried on during the last century 

a system of careful patching, staying, and repair ! 

• Qent. Ma^.y 1803-4. 


Even yet, if we could arrest attempts at improve- 
ment — as if the church were not good enough for 
us — of which the results are creeping over the 
whole building in a sort of deadly disease, and 
substitute mere daily carefulness, much of the 
authentic past might be handed on for other ages. 
Already in 1683 Keepc noticed that the corro- 
sion of the walls of the church was the result 
of '' the smokes of sea-coal.*' * Since that time 
surface decay has gone on with ever increasing 
rapidity. Some of Scott's work, like the well- 
built and costly parapet, is already quickly perishing, 
and parts of the surface of the still newer transept 
are blistering and powdering. Extravagant works 
of this sort cannot be repeated every fifty years, 
and we must face the fact that only one reasonable 
thing can be done, and that is to wash the whole with 
lime. If mediaeval authority is wanted there is plenty 
of precedent for such "blanching." In 1342, for 
instance, " slaked lime for whitening the walls ot 
the church " appears in the accounts, and in those 
of 1253 ^^^ Ade, dealbator^ is seen engaged week 
after week. Probably this was for the interior, 
but orders for Windsor and the Tower say dis- 
tinctly that certain important works are to be 
whitewashed " inside and out." On the question 
of beauty I do not doubt that a thin skin of lime, 
the obtrusiveness of which would soon mellow in 
tone, would give a satisfying sense of wholeness 
and fairness which would immensely amend the 
disagreeable surface and the sophisticated look ot 
the present smoke-attacked stone. If it were only 

* "Carbonc Marino" is mentioned in the Fabric Roll of 1253. 


made clean once more we might almost hope to 
see again the pennywort which Gerarde found 
growing over the entrance to the Poets' Corner.* 

These great national buildings, the Parthenon, 
St. Mark's, Reims, and Westminster, are much 
more than works of art — they embody the souls ot 
ancient peoples, who, whether better and wiser or 
not, were assuredly different from ourselves. 

* See the vaults of the passage-ways opening on the east of Dean's 
Yard, whitewashed some six years ago. They were in a terrible state ; 
now they are wholesome, yet the stone joints all show^ and the ordinary 
visitor would not know of the lime-whiting. The decay of the door 
to the vestibule of the Chapter House must be arrested. 




The Foundation of the Abbey : The Confessor's Church : Norman 
Buildings : The Lady Chapel. 

E PEgHce de Westminster 
Ki n^a en reaume per, 

" French Life of the Confessor," r. 1270. 

The origin of Westminster Abbey has been ob- 
scured by such a mist of legend, backed by false 
rpM charters, that recent writers have for the 

p , . most part waived discussion of the 
^ - subject. It is time that all the documents 

•^// concerning the early history of our 

"^' Abbey should be subjected to a strict 
critical examination by an expert.* Failing this I 
can only set down here in a tentative way the results 
I have arrived at on such evidence as is already 
made sure. 

It is certain that there were buildings here before 
the Confessor began his work, and that there was a 
community at Westminster in the latter part of the 
tenth century. The Chroniclers of the Abbey, 

• Even the charters of the Confessor are said to be " fabrications " 
(Sir J. H. Ramsay^ '' Foundations of £ng./' p. 506) ; and the famous 
charter of the Conqueror seems to contain legendary matter. Sir F. 
Madden said that the monks of Westminster were addicted to the 
fabrication of charters, and they had the Confessor's seal in their pos- 
session. It is extremely doubtful if any of the great charters of the 
Abbey earlier than Henry L are genuine. {^Archaol, Jour,,, vol. xix.) 
Bishop Stubbs seems to have held a similar view (Lectures). 


however, push its origin back to the time of 
Mellitus, the first Bishop of London. But, even 
according to them, there was an interregnum in the 
earlier part of the tenth century until it was 
refounded by Dunstan,* who, under his own head- 
ship, intrusted it to the care of the monk Wulsin, 
who afterwards became Abbot. Wulsin still later 
was made Bishop of Sherborne, and was canonised 
after his death. -f* He was succeeded at Westminster 
by Aldsey, Wulnoth, and Edwyn — the last of whom 
was Abbot while the Confessor's church was in 
progress, and during the first years of the Con- 
queror's reign. 

External evidence begins only with the abbacy 
of Wulsin, although the earlier legends were fortified 
at last by a complete list of Abbots reaching back to 
the seventh century.:]: W. of Malmesbury and R. de 
Diceto mention the re-foundation of the Abbey by 
Dunstan, but the great reputation of Dunstan as 
the restorer of monastic life might well lead to the 
almost spontaneous generation of the story. It is 
difficult to fit the dates satisfactorily, and the way 
he is brought in as a sort of over-lord to Wulsin 
before the latter became full Abbot is suggestive, 
and my own conclusion is that the Abbey was first 
founded about 970, and that Wulsin was its first 

One piece of evidence as to the non-existence of 
the Abbey at an early time which has not been 

* Some accounts say while he was Bishop of London, others say 
962, and 969. 

t St. Wulsin, Bishop and Confessor. Jan. 8. 

X See list in Sporley's M.S. and Scott's " Gleanings." 



used in this connection, is that in Ethelweard's 
"Chronicle " we find that the Danes in 893, crossing 
the Thames on their way northwards fromFarnham, 
were besieged in the Isle of Thorney, the name 
which we find in old charters and chronicles given 
to the insulated site of the Abbey. If there had 
been a monastic community there at this time it 
could hardly have escaped notice ; we get, however, 
an interesting confirmation as to the early name of 
the site. 

Extravagant claims are frequently made for the 
antiquity of Westminster, and unsubstantial pre- 
tensions (as I think) are advanced as to its inde- 
pendence of London. The charters, ancient even 
if forged, speak of it as West Monasterium outside 
London ; St. Peter's outside the walls of London ; 
in the western part of London, &c. ; and Fleete, 
writing in 1443, calls its site suburbana Thorneia. 
The Life of the Confessor, c. 1070, speaks of the 
Abbey as " St. Peter's without the walls of London 
. . . near the famous and opulent city." * 

The very name, the West Minster, relates the 
Abbey to St. Paul's Minster and the City, and 
there seems to me considerable probability that its 
lands, conterminous as they were with those of 
London, were carved out of the original suburban 
lands of the City. The boundaries of Westminster 
are defined in a Saxon document embodied in a 
doubtful Latin charter, dated 951, a date all allow 
to be impossible. Mr. Stevenson, however, the 

* In the "French Life," r. 1270, we are told that the Confessor 
was at London in his palace and went to St. Peter's, which was near by. 
Westminster is frequently spoken of as *• at London." 



great charter authority, thinks that the date 971 
might be substituted, and that the charter might 
be accepted.* If this were indeed so, it would 
give us, I consider, the first valid mention of the 
Abbey, and would, in fact, be its original pro- 
vision of lands. In any case, the Saxon account 
of boundaries is of the greatest interest. 

As to Wulsin, or more properly Wulfsige, the 
Abbot who became Bishop of Sherborne, there is 
no doubt whatever. According to Bishop Stubbs's 
register he ruled that See from 992 to looi, and 
William of Malmesbury calls him ex-Abbot ot 
Westminster.-f We may suppose that he was 
Abbot of Westminster from about 970 to 992. 

For the next Abbot there is also independent 
evidence in a charter of 997 attested by " Elfwic, 
Abbot of Westminster.'*:}: We may date his rule 
from 992 to 1 01 7. 

Of Wulfnoth, who then succeeded, we have the 
record of his death, while Abbot of Westminster, 
entered in the Saxon Chronicle under 1049. 
During his time we first hear of a connection 
between the Abbey and the Royal House, for 
in 1040 Harold Harefoot was buried within its 

♦ "The Crawford Charters." 

t See his " Life of Dunstan " in Rolls Scries (Stubbs). W. of 
Malmesbury does not here mention Dunstan in connection with West- 
minster, but in his collected " Lives of the Bishops" the story occurs 
with the legend of the first foundation by Mellitus. All this must have 
come from a Westminster source. According to Eadmer the chasuble 
of Dunstan was preserved at Westminster. 

t Kemble's Cod. Dip. 698. A valid charter not of Westminster. 

i Sax. Chron. 

G 97 


Edwyn, who succeeded Wulfnoth, died about 

As to the first buildings, the writer who describes 
the Confessor's work almost directly after his 
death, only tells us that those it superseded were 
old and poor. There is in Westminster still one 
relic of the Saxon age in the lid fitted to a Roman 
sarcophagus which was found in 1869 under the 
north green. It has a cross roughly carved on 
it and now stands in the entry to the Chapter 

There are two early accounts of the Confessor's 
Church, one written not later than 1074, and the 
rpi other about the middle of the thirteenth 

^ r t century.* Certain fragments of the 
^^ , foundations were found by Scott in 
1866, as he mentions in his " Recollec- 
tions," and all the evidence has been ably co- 
ordinated by Mr. Micklethwaite in a paper in the 
iiArchaological Journal.^ The view in the Bayeux 
Tapestry can hardly be taken as an authority except 
as showing the palace in close proximity to the 

It was a large cross-church with a central tower 
over the choir of the singers and an apse to the 
east. The aisles were vaulted and the roofs covered 
with lead. The Confessor's work was to the east 
of the older Saxon church, which remained, in 
fact, as its nave. The remnants of three bases of 
the arcade which separated the presbytery from its 
aisle still exist under the mosaic floor. The posi- 

* Dr. Luardy in Rolls Series. t March 1894. 



tion of the cloister shows that the crossing must 
have been where it is now. 

The statement that the tower was above the 
choir of the singers is evidence that the work was 
carried on for one or two bays westward of the 
crossing : " The centre line of the old church was 

^n n n n n n n n 


"U LT 

Fig. 34. — Conjectural plan of the Confessor's Church 

the same as that of the present one, and the total 
width west of the crossing is unchanged, but east 
of the crossing the main space has been narrower." 
Mr. Micklethwaite further points out that what we 
know of the old Lady Chapel, built in 1220 in ex- 
tension of the Confessor's church, goes to prove 
that the early apse stood where the present one 

All are agreed that the Confessor built the 
church after the manner of the architecture of 
France. William of Malmesbury says it was of a 
"new kind"* and "the first in England erected 

• "Lives of the Bishops." 



in the fashion which now all follow at great 

If we seek for a direct prototype it is probable we 
should look to Jumieges, a famous church founded 
in 1040 by Robert, who became Archbishop of 
Canterbury, and who, W. of Malmesbury says, 
was there buried in the church which he chiefly 
had built at vast expense.-i^ 

A comparison with Jumieges raises again a 
point well discussed bv Mr. Micklethwaite. Were 
the aisles of the Confessor's church of two storeys 
as was inferred by Wren from the Latin description, 
or was the phrase in question mere vague rhetoric ? 
On all the evidence we must, I believe, decide 
that Wren's reading was the right one : — (i) 
Jumieges, we are told, "presents us, perhaps, with 
the earliest example of the true triforium, a com- 
plete second storey, capacious as the aisle below and 
vaulted in a similar manner." (2) The Latin de- 
scription of Westminster agrees with itself, for it 
says that both " above and below were chapels with 
altars dedicated to the memory of apostles, martyrs, 
confessors, and virgins." (3) Such a form best 
accounts for the remarkable triforium of the pre- 
sent church with its chapels in two storeys, a thing 
unique in mid-thirtcenth-century architecture, but 
general in France in the eleventh and twelfth cen- 
turies. The Conqueror's own church, S. Stephen's, 
Caen, follows this type. J In England the idea that 

* Chronicles. One might suppose that in writing this he had the 
nearest cathedral — Gloucester — in mind. 

t It was consecrated in 1067 at which time the nave was probably 
completed. t So also the chapel in the Tower of London. 



the triforium storey was of great importance and to 
be marked by exterior windows is common in 
early Norman works as at Durham, Ely, Peter- 
borough, Winchester, old St. Paul's, Waltham 
Abbey, &c. When Henry HI. rebuilt the church 
he retained this characteristic, which otherwise 
cannot be accounted for. 

It is also more probable than not that there were 
chapels opening from the ambulatory as well as 
from the transepts. This was usual in French 
churches earlier than the Confessor's, and in 
English churches built directly after the Conquest. 
It would, I think, be impossible to point to a 
Norman church having an ambulatory which had 
not also radiating chapels. There must have also 
been suitable access to the upper chapels.* On 
these grounds I venture to revise the plan which 
has been suggested for the older church to this 
extent (Fig. 34). I have also shortened the nave 
by two bays. Had the Norman towers been in 
the position of the present towers I cannot think 
that they would have been destroyed in the 
fifteenth century, or torn down to the height of 
those west towers shown on Hollar's print of the 
west front. It must be admitted that the plan 
has few fixed points. The Confessor's building, 
in any case, was a noble one amongst Norman 
churches. As late as 1 161, when Abbot Lawrence 
wrote to the Pope to obtain Edward's canonisation, 

• At St, Ouen there is an early transeptal chapel in two stages, 1 046- 
1126, and it was usual in Norman churches to have galleries across the 
ends of the transepts communicating with such chapels. It was so at 
Jumi^ges. The radislting chapels derive ultimately from St. Marti n's^Tour?. 



he described it as a noble building which the King 
had richly endowed and beatissime consummavitJ^ 

The Confessor probably began his new choir 
about 1055, and it was consecrated only a few days 
before his death, when he was too ill to attend. 
In the Saxon Chronicle, under the year 1065, we 
read : '' In this year was hallowed the Minster at 
Westminster, on Childermas Day (December 28). 
And King Edward died on the eve of Twelfth 
Mass and was buried on the Twelfth Mass Day 
within the newly hallowed church." His grave 
was before the altar of St. Peter, and a few years 
later Edith, his queen, was laid by his side. They, 
says Gaimar, at " Westmonster furent posez en dous 
sarcuz mult bien overez.** In a charter which 
purports to be one given to the Abbey in 1067 by 
the Conqueror, which may embody a true tradition, 
however untrustworthy in itself, we have a very 
curious reference to the Confessor's " architect." 
It is a confirmation to the Abbey of certain pos- 
sessions, amongst which are mentioned the land and 
houses which Godwin, surnamed Great Syd, the 
Master Cementarius -f gave with the reservation that 
his son iElfwin should enjoy them for life. 

We do not know if any of the domestic buildings 

of the Abbey were erected by the Confessor, 

J.T although the dormitory and its sub- 

Norman ^ ^^ r ^i-j..u 

P y ,. structure are frequently said to be part 

^ ' of his work. The actual remains, how- 
ever, of this part, and of the Refectory show that 

• Robertson. Materials : Hist. Becket. 

t In the translation in the 29th Report of the Record Office this 


the buildings about the cloister were of post- 
Conquest work. Of the eastern range a charac- 
teristic feature is found in the alternate use 
of stones of two colours, as may be seen 
about a door in the Dormitory, and a piece of 
wall in the angle of the Little Cloister. (Figs. 
35^ and 35^.) This latter portion, with its 

Fig. 35^. — Ancient 
Door in Dormitory, 
now Westminster 

— ■■:> H- - — '^^^ — ^7—1 


ll fj/j lll f i mWHII*Vt 

Fig. 35^. — Ancient Masonry 
(r. 1 100) in Little Cloister 

diagonally placed square stones, is exactly like 
some ancient walling once on Westminster Hall, 
and, like that, I should date it about 1 090-1 100. 
Some of the arches of the under-croft have rem- 
nants of painted decoration. (Fig. 36.) Several 
caps of the old Cloister have been found, some of 
which are preserved in the entry to the Chapter 
House. Another, which doubtless belonged to the 

word is given as Plasterer, but in the duplicate entry in the B.M. 
charters he appears as ** Godwin, called Great Syd, Cenuntarius of 
that church." 



cloister, although it was found some distance away,* 
had an inscription on which the word Claustrum 
and the names of Abbot Gilbert (1082 to 1121) 
and William II. appeared.-f 

The dormitory and cloister may thus be dated 
c. 1 090- 1 100. Leland has a note taken from a 
Chronicle of Malmesbury Abbey, 
"Anno D. mo, inchoatum est 
novum opus Westmonasterie." He 
adds that the King himself laid the 
first stone. This probably refers to 
the nave, and we may suppose that 
the refectory was by this time com- 
pleted. Of the nave of the church 
several fragments have been found 
Fig. 36. -Norman ^hich belonged to a work of the 
painting in under- middle of the twelfth century. " It 
croft of Dormitory was of the Same width as the present 
nave, a good deal of which is, in fact, 
built on the old foundation." At the west end were 
bell-towers. The nave was completed about 1 1 60. 
The considerable remains, not often seen, of St. 
Katherine's, the chapel of the infirmary, to the east 
of the little cloister, are of delicate late Norman 
work, almost transitional in character, which I 
should date about 1165-70. It was explored in 
1 87 1 on the removal of some buildings, and 

• In the walls of the gate-tower of the palace, destroyed in 1807. 
It was sold to Sir Gregory Page Turner, and should if possible be 
re-discovered. It is illustrated in Brayley and Britton's •* Palace of 

t Scott, in his " Recollections,** speaks of the discovery of a 
^ compartment and numerous capitals of the Norman cloister.** 


consists of three aisles, five bays long with columns 

alternately round and octagonal, with elegantly 

scalloped capitals and notched arches. The windows 

have angle shafts, and arches beaded to the inside. 

Eastward is a chancel with 

a part of its altar still in 

place, and there were two 

other altars at the ends of 

the aisles. The nave and 

aisles of this chapel were 

almost certainly continued 

westward over part of the 

present Little Cloister, and 

included the infirmary 

hall.* The wall which 

now terminates the chapel 

to the west was built 

about 1 340. (Figs. 37 and 


According to Acker- 
man, Henry II. was a par- 
ticular benefactor to West- 
minster, and the " New 

Works*' there. He says, citing "an MS. in the 
Cottonian Library," that the king, at the request 
of Abbot Lawrence, repaired the offices, which 
had for the most part been consumed by fire. 
The only exact record I find is in the Pipe Roll, 
21 Hen. II., and is of the payment of 40 shillings 
to Alnoth pro operiendo refectorio. This is at least 
interesting, as giving us the name of the King's 
most famous master of the works at the Tower, 

Fig. 37.— Plan of St. Katherine's 

An infirmary cloister is mentioned in the thirteenth century. 



Fig. 38. — Detail of Arcade of 
St. Katherine's Chapel 

the Palace, and Wind- 
sor. He is elsewhere 
called IngentatorJ^ 

Neale says that in the 
time of Abbot Lawrence 
stalls are mentioned as 
being made for the 
" New Work/' This, 
Scott supposed, applied 
to the chapel of St. 
Katherine, but it seems 
more probable that it 
was part of a re-arrange- 
ment of the church con- 
sequent upon the com- 
pletion of the nave and 
the translation of the 
Confessor's body in 
1 163, when, we are 
told, it was taken out 
of the earth by Thomas 
of Canterbury and en- 

We may say that the 
church was finished by 
1 163, and that the in- 
firmary was built about 
the same time. That the 
chapel of St. Katherine 
was the work of Abbot 
Lawrence seems to be 

• He was working at the Palace from 9 to 24 Hen. II., and St. 
Katherine's may have been erected under his direction. 


shown by the fact that his anniversary was cele- 
brated there, and one of the altars of the chapel 
was dedicated in honour of St. Lawrence.* St. 
Katherine's was destroyed in the year I57i.'f- 

The nave altars of the church were dedi- 
cated from the first, as later, in honour of Holy 
Cross (centre), the Trinity (south), and the 
Blessed Virgin (north). In the Golden Legend 
we are told of the Confessor how he was praying 
at the altar of the Trinity when he saw a vision ; 
and the Virgin's altar in the nave came to be called 
" Old St. Mary V' that is older than the chapel of 
1 220. Holy Cross was a usual early dedication 
for the altar below the Nave Rood. We also hear 
of a chapel of St. Nicholas, near which Egelvic, 
Bishop of Durham, was buried in \ojz.% 

Matthew Paris tells us that on Saturday, the vigil 
of Pentecost, in the year 1220, was begun the New 
fL T J Work of the chapel of the Blessed 
C/mt) I ^^^g^^> of which the king (Henry HI.), 
^ ' laid the first stone. This chapel was 
built at the cost of the Abbey, and indulgences 
were issued to subscribers. An order of the king s 
exists for the delivery to the Prior of the golden 
spurs made for " our coronation, which we have 

* See CustomSy Bradshaw Society. 

t Widmore, p. 142. 

X Stanley. As early as the IXth, century the plan of St. Gall 
shows the Holy Cross altar in the middle of the nave. I have found 
Holy Trinity altar mentioned before the rebuilding of the church as 
the place where the G^nfessor saw in a vision the King of the Danes 
drowned. (Cal. Charter Rolls, anno 1246.) 



given for the New Work of the chapel of St. 

The work went forward very slowly, for in 
1233—4 a grant was made to the Abbot (Berkinge) 
of twenty oaks for the work in the church and as 
many for " the New Work of his chapel of St. 
Mary.*'-f- These oaks would have been required 
for the roof, and below we shall find that the 
chapel was not at first vaulted, but had a timber 
roof. In 1243-4 the Keeper of the Mint was 
ordered to have two altars of St. Adrian and St. 
Michael made for the new chapel of St. Mary. 
In 1246 Abbot Berkinge died and was buried be- 
fore the High Altar of the chapel which he had 

In 1875 some foundations were discovered by 
Mr. Wright, which seemed to show that the Lady 
Chapel was a long, apsidal-ended building which 
occupied the space now covered by the central area 
of Henry VI I. 's new Lady Chapel. Neale tells us 
that when Henry VII. *s chapel was recased many 
wrought members of the old chapel were found. 
One capital of a muUion and some fragments of dog- 
tooth moulding, now in the vestibule to the Chapter 
House, may have belonged to the Lady Chapel. 
In Abbot Ware's " Customs " mention is made of 
twenty tapers on the beam before the altar, of 
others " in the hands of the angels," J and of two 
at the feet of Abbot Berkinge. Peter of Spain, 
the painter, some time before 1272, made two 

♦ L. G. Wickham Legg, " Coron. Records," p. 56. 
t Close Roll. 

t On the pillars which would have supported the altar curtains. 


pictures for the altar of St. Mary, for which the 
large sum of j^8o was paid.* 

Already, before the rebuilding, the Confessor's 
feasts were splendidly celebrated. In 1242 Henry 
in. granted ^20 (say >C40o) ^ y^'^^ ^^^ keeping up 
four wax candles about the feretrum, in addition to 
the old lights, and for providing at Christmas and 
on the two feasts of St. Edward 300 wax candles 
at each.-f- 

♦ "Gleanings," p. 113! t Cal. Charter Rolls. 




Henry III. and his Artists : Sources of the Design : Reims : The 
Ste. Chapelle : Amiens. 

"... Henry the Thirds whilom of England King, 
IVho this church brakiy and after his meed 
Again renewed into thisftsir building 
Now resteth here which did so great a thing^ 

Fabyan's Translation of Ancient Epitaph. 

Henry the Third's master passion was for building 
and for collecting works of art — images, pictures, 
TT TTT jewels, relics, plate, and stuffs. London 
, /. * was practically transformed in his reign 
^ . from the central spire of St. Paul's to 

the gates of the City and the Tower. 
Great works were carried on at most of the royal 
castles and manors — Westminster, Winchester, 
Windsor, Kennington, Clarendon, Gloucester, 
Guildford, Woodstock, Dublin, and the rest. The 
Confessor was Henry's special patron, and the king 
seems hardly to have gone on a journey, or to have 
undertaken any serious matter, without offering 
some gifts at the Westminster shrine. His charity 
was as profuse as the extortion which made it 
possible was constant. Again and again, as the 
greater festivals came around, orders were issued 
to fill the palace even to the king's and queen's 
chambers, with poor people, and to feast them for 
days together. At one moment he orders that all 
the gold to be had in London should be obtained 



for his use ; at another a vestment, '' the most 
beautiful ever seen/' was to be bought ; then, 
again, 600 marks' worth of jewelled rings and 
brooches were to be purchased. 

On the Abbey church he continuously showered 
his gifts — silver vessels for the chrism ; banners, 
baudekins, and other hangings (one to be hung 
opposite the organs) ; four silver candlesticks for the 
shrine ; a great silver crown to set wax candles 
upon ; twelve " obols de muse " to be attached to 
the crucifix ; a large cross for the nave, and two 
cherubim to be placed on either hand ; a crown 
of the value of twenty pounds to be offered to 
St. Edward ; a cloth, 12 ft. by 6 ft., to be 
broidered with pearls, representing images from the 
Bible (in 1253) ; a precious jewel worth 60 or 100 
marks ; and so on. 

In 1 24 1 he seems to have begun a new golden 
shrine for the Confessor, and from this time 
expenses in connection with this great work con- 
tinually occur. We may suppose that his intention 
to rebuild the church dates from this time, although 
active preparation does not seem to have been 
made until 1243.* ^^ ^^47 ^^^ ^^^8 obtained a 
portion of the Holy Blood, duly attested by the 
Patriarch of Jerusalem, and Matthew Paris gives a 
sketch of the procession when the king carried it 
from St. Paul's to the Abbey, just as St. Louis had 
brought his Holy Thorns into Paris. (Fig. 39.) 
Two or three years later a footprint, said to have 
been made at the Ascension, was also sent to Henry, 

* In 1 246 he ordained by charter that he should be buried by the 
Confessor's side. 



and was by him given to Westminster. Langtoft 
and other chroniclers tell us that Henry built, at 
his own cost, " le overayne bele a Westminster." 
The artists whom he employed were the royal 
masons and carpenters attached to the 
SlJ[fj^. palace, and it is owing to the fact that 
the money for the work passed through 
the king's coffers that the bills for the 
work have been preserved as Govern- 
ment documents. 

As to-day at a large country house 
we may find an estate carpenter and 
mason permanently engaged, so to the 
Fig. 39.— king's palace were attached a chief 

Henry III. and 1 ^ . -.u J 

the Relic ^oy^l mason, carpenter, smith, and 
painter, just as there were a chief 
butler and cook ; and these oflicers followed one 
another in unbroken succession. The office of 
royal mason existed as a sinecure almost until to- 
day. In the time of Charles I. it was still held 
by a working mason, Nicholas Stone, who was 
appointed in 1626 king's mason and architect, "as 
Will Suthis had been." A century later the painter- 
architect, Kent, was appointed king's mason. Under 
the chief master-mason or carpenter a body of 
journeymen were permanently engaged, but at 
times of special effort they were " pressed by royal 
warrant to work at the king's wages," a custom 
which has not very long lapsed in the Royal 

At Westminster, when any serious work of 

• For masons of the Household of Edward II., sec Brayley and 
Britton's " Palace of Westminster." 


masonry was going forward, the master-mason was 
likely to be in daily contact with the king, and 
mention of exchanges of wine between Henry III. 
and his mason suggests their intimate relations. 
John of Gloucester, indeed, was king of masonry 
in these realms. 

When masonry was undertaken a mason had 
charge of it, and, later, a carpenter was called in, 
while a clerk kept the accounts. Henry III.*s 
work at Westminster was usually conducted through 
Odo, a goldsmith, and, later, his son Edward, 
who acted as treasurers, paying for materials and 
hiring workmen. These clerkly officials are some- 
times called " keepers of the works " at West- 
minster. The master workmen are also called 
keepers of the works at times, and they then seem to 
have also overlooked and guaranteed the accounts.* 

The fabric accounts for Westminster are most 
accurate and systematic. They were made up 
weekly, and discriminate between payments for 
wages, for " task-work,*' and for materials. They 
usually specify every man's trade, and distinguish 
between the master-craftsman and the other work- 
men so precisely that there is but little difficulty 
or danger of error in following the career of" Master 
Henry the king's master-mason," or " Master 
Alexander the king's carpenter." In some cases I 
have been able to trace back these great artists, the 
architects of our Gothic monuments, to a time 
when they were working as journeymen, much as 

♦ Hudson Turner has called Edward the " architect " of the church 
and Robert of Beverley a clerk of works, but this, as we shall see, 
inverts their offices. 

H 113 


we can trace the antecedents of bishops to a time 
when, as poor boys, they were apprenticed to 
religion. * 

In the poetic Life of the Confessor, written about 
1 270, we are told how he called together masons 
and carpenters for the conduct of the work, and in 
the original MS. at Cambridge there is a painted 
illustration showing the craftsmen taking their 
instructions from the king. (Fig. 65.) Their 
dress, of course, is that of the time of Henry III. 
A group of three stand forward to hear the king. 
The first is a master-mason in official master's 
cap, wearing gloves and carrying a long levelling 
" straight-edge." Kneeling below him is the 
carpenter with a coif on his head and bearing an 
axe. Behind the master is another mason, who 
bears a stone-axe and turns to pass on the instruc- 
tions to the body of workers behind. It is virtually 
a picture of Henry III.*s craftsmen at the Abbey — 
let us say portraits of Robert de Beverley, Alexander 
the carpenter, and the foreman of masons. 

Matthew Paris also gives a second little sketch 
relating to Westminster, which is interesting as a 
memorial of Henry's chief gifts to Westminster ; it 
shows the church, the shrine, and the great bells. 
(Fig. 40.) 

The first royal mason I have found mentioned is 

♦ There are probably nearly a hundred of these Fabric Rolls, 
many of them 12 ft. to 20 ft. long. Most of these are at the Record 
Office, calendered as Works Q.R. I have also made use of a valu- 
able MS. Calendar oi Close Rolls at the same place. Other Rolls 
are in the MS. Department of the British Museum. Several at the 
Abbey I only know through the Calendar in the ** Historic MSS, 
Report," vol. iv. 


Radulphus " Cementarius Regis,'* who was working 

in 1 171 at Dover Castle, and in the next year at 

Chilham. Two years before, in 1169, I find the 

style " Magister " Robertas Cementarius. The 

earliest London mason 

I have found named is 

Andrew, Cementarius at 

St. Paul's in 1 1 27, where 

he was doubtless the 


In I 236-7 the keeper p^c. 40.— Church, Shrine and 
of the works at the Bells from M. Paris 

Palace of Westminster 

was John of Waverley, mason ; and two years 
later the carpentry work of the palace was in the 
hands of Master Alexander the carpenter, whom 
we shall meet again working at the Abbey. 

Up to about the year 1200 our early Gothic 
work developed along with the Art of Normandy 
o and of the French kingdom. After this 

^ , time there was a serious set-back to the 

^ . progress of building in England, caused 

^ ' by the general political and social ills 
of the time — the loss of Normandy and Anjou, 
the Pope*s Interdict, and the Barons' War. Our 
church at Westminster clearly shows a return of 
Continental influence ; and, even more, a study of 
particular French models. It was erected just at 
the moment when French building art had attained 
to European fame. Cologne Cathedral, the greatest 
of French churches, although on German soil, was 
begun only three years later than Westminster, 



and, in Spain, the cathedrals of Toledo, Burgos, and 
Leon, are all noble offshoots of the French School. 

French Gothic Art of the middle of the thirteenth 
century had been shaped by the tremendous experi- 
mental force with which it was pushed forward to 
constructive results such as English masons hardly 
apprehended. It was the conscious aim of French 
masons to make every member do its uttermost ; 
the result was structure of maximum tension. 
Carlyle's chance phrase, that Cologne Cathedral was 
'' the supreme of earthly masonry," well expresses 
what the great Gothic School desired to attain to. 

When Westminster was begun the choir ot 
Reims had been consecrated four years; the Sainte 
Chapelle in Paris was well advanced, and it was 
consecrated in 1248; the nave of Amiens was 
finished, its vast choir was just being begun, and 
it was completed in the same year, 1269, in which 
Henry III.*s work at Westminster was consecrated. 
Beauvais, the mightiest choir of them all, was 
begun in 1247 and finished in 1271, thus ex- 
actly following Westminter at an interval of two 

Gilbert Scott supposed that Henry III., being 
enamoured of the French type of church, sent his 
Master of the Works to visit the French cathedrals. 
In "imitating" the great contemporary churches 
of France, he thinks that he was especially in- 
fluenced in planning the radiating apsidal chapels, 
and in the tracery of the windows which follows 
the bar-type first used at Reims. The arrange- 
ment of the flying buttresses is, he also points out, 

in the French manner. Of the portals of the 


north transept he writes, that they are " the only 
instance in which these glorious portals, so common 
in France, were directly imitated in an English 
church." He shows, however, that the details arc 
typically English, except for the work of possibly 
one French carver. G. G. Scott, junior, says, " it 
is clearly the work of an English architect who 
was well acquainted with Reims, Amiens, and 

With all this I fully agree, except that for 
Beauvais I would substitute Paris. And more 
ij . than this, I have no doubt that Reims 

was the specific type which was followed 
at Westminster. We may see a reason for this in 
the fact that both are coronation churches ; and 
it may have been that the rebuilding of the 
former led Henry III. to his undertaking at West- 
minster. It is a remarkable fact that Reims is the 
only Gothic cathedral church in France in which 
the choir passes to the west of the crossing, and 
includes the first bays of the structural nave exactly 
like the choir arrangement at Westminster. 

When at Reims I have been impressed by a sense 

of its general resemblance to the so well-known 

Westminster church. The most striking likeness 

in detail is that one type of window, consisting of 

two lights with a big rose above, combined into 

tracery, is used throughout both churches, in the 

aisles, around the chapels, and along the clerestories. 

Our windows and the radiating chapels we may 

speak of as copies of those at Reims. In both 

Westminster and Reims the interior of a chapel 



is made up of a wall-arcade with a wall-passage 
above, and of a series of tall windows filling out 
the rest of the wall space right up to the vault cells. 
Besides the general resemblance, there are too 
many coincidences of detail to be explained except 
as the result of direct imitation ; for example : 
the planning of the buttresses ; the narrow piers 
between the windows threaded by the wall-passages ; 

Fig. 41. — Destroyed Church of St. Pharon at Meaux 

the rib lying against the surface of the vault in the 

position of a rere-arch to each window ; the stilted 

form of the windows, whereby it was made possible 

to obtain very large roses, in each case of similar 

six-foiled form ; the way in which the windows 

are associated with the buttresses on the outside, 

and, within, are copied on the blank sides of the 

chapels. The divisions between the chapels are 

also much alike. At Reims the terminations of 

these divisions against the ambulatory take the 

form of half of one of the main piers of the choir 

arcade, and Professor Willis, in his Commentary on 

Villars de Honnecourt, notes that this plan was 

followed at Westminster and Beauvais. (Fig. 42.) 

The continuous wall passage along the top of the 

wall-arcade for the service of the altars of the 

chapels at Westminster is exactly like that at 


Reims. (Fig. 59.) In the general planning ol 
the apse and its chapels at Westminster the form 
seems to be arrived at by combining the scheme of 
Reims, which also had five chapels, with such plans 
as that of Amiens and of St. Pharon at Meaux, 
where the outside pair of apse chapels are thrown 
to the west of the centre point of the apse much 
as at Westminster.* (Fig. 41.) At Reims, as at 
Westminster, a window in one of the apsidal 
chapels on each side of the church tells in the 
vista of the side aisles. (Fig. 59.) At both we 
find similar oblong chapels at the springir3,j3f the 

The pillars in both churches are of one general 
form, made up of a central drum and four shafts, 
although at Westminster the shafts are separated 
from the core to suit the marble construction. 
The bases, again, at Westminster, those at the east 
of the apse especially, with their flattened roll and 
the distinction between the projection for the main 
base and for the lesser shafts, so characteristic of 
French work, are copies of those around the choir 
at Reims. (Fig. 42.) The highly developed 
carved spurs to the bases are also of French 
character. There is one to the right of the gate 
entering the north ambulatory, which has a 
vigorous carving of a lion attacking a horse, all in 
polished marble. (Fig. 1 24.) 

♦ This is not followed at Haylcs Abbey, where the chcvet (1271) 
was copied from Westminster except that it is closer to the Reims 
prototype. To compare the chapels of Reims with those of Westminster 
it is well to take V. le Due's volumes, which contain the interior and 
exterior views, to the Abbey. 



At Reims, and at Westminster, the capitals of the 
piers were linked together with a system of iron ties 



Fig. 42. — Pillars and bases at Reims and Westminster 

passing across at the springing of the arches. "At the 
Cathedral of Reims,'* says VioUet-le-Duc, "the con- 
struction of which was executed with great magni- 


ficence, they substituted for provisional ties in wood 
placed under the springing stones of the arches, 
hooks of iron to which were attached iron bars 
having an eye at each end." The hooks remain at 
Reims, but the bars have been removed. 

The vaulting ribs of the aisles follow a distinctly 
French section, and there are other French mould- 
ings in the church. Another method of construc- 
tion which was adopted from the French is to be 
found in the way that the clerestory windows are 
brought towards the inside of the church, and not 
set, as usual, in sloping jambs ; they were finished 
with nearly similar pillars and mouldings both in- 
side and out. The doubling of the tracery plane 
in the triforium is also derived from French work. 
At the moment when Westminster was built triforia 
pierced a-jour were all the rage. At St. Denis, 
Amiens, Tours, Chartres (St. Pierre), and a dozen 
other great churches we find a continuous band of 
doubled tracery as here, but the outer plane is 
glazed like the bays of our South Transept, which 
form a continuation of the triforium. 

A second chief foreign source for the forms of 
the Westminster architecture is the Ste. Chapelle. 
T/i 9/ ^^ course I suppose all English tra- 
rh h II ditions to have been known to the 
^ * master as well as the special continental 

St. Louis, having obtained the Crown of thorns 

from the East, began the Ste. Chapelle to contain it 

in 1 24 1. All this was instantly known in England, 

and Matthew Paris records the very day the relic 



was received from Constantinople — March 20, 

1 241 — and uses his best word — " incomparable " — 

for the new chapel. Henry HI/s artistic sympathies 

with France is referred to in a contemporary ballad, 

in which he is made to say, " Paris 

^^^ is a great town, and in it is a 

^LJU^L chapel which I would like to 

yfc^.yJ ^J\ carry off to London in a cart tout 

a^Um^^ ^roit.'' * This chapel is the first 

mT^^WT^R work in which an attempt was 

¥if^W^f\ made to transform the walls into 

I I thin rigid props containing only 

I I glass ; in its achievement the 

I I possibilities of Gothic construe- 

I I tion were practically exhausted, 

I I and no other building has had 

^ ^^^^ ^Jj such influence except, perhaps, 


Scott pointed out the resemb- 
lance of the four-light windows ot 
the Chapter House to those in 
St. Louis* Chapel, and this is so evident that one set 
must be a copy of the other. (Fig. 43.) In the Paris 
example the cusps of the six-foil terminate in 
bunches of carving. This is the origin of the rounded 
ends of those at Westminster; indeed, in some of the 
chapels of the apse several of the cusp-ends are also 
carved. In the apse at the Ste. Chapelle the heads 
of the tracery are made of three uncontained trefoils 
balanced on one another. (Fig. 1 1.) We find a similar 
treatment in the earlier portion of the Westminster 
cloister. (Fig. 42.) Didron, long ago, showed that 

Fig. 43. — Diagram 
of Chapter House 

* J. VVright, Political Songs. 



the two types of windows at the Ste. Chapelle 
were copied in the earliest portion of Cologne 
Cathedral ; and that they instantly became most 
famous is shown by the numerous imitations ot 
them which sprang up in France. The clerestory 
of Tours Cathedral, for instance, shows both 
patterns used in the same relation as at Paris. 

Uncontained trefoil heads and quatrefoils are 
also found in the lateral wall-arcades at the Ste. 
Chapelle, and the wall-arcade of the apse is ot 
cuspcd arches which may have set the type for 
those throughout Westminster. The remarkable 
triangular windows of the Westminster triforium 
may have originated from those in the lower 
chapel in Paris, although there are similar windows 
in the west end of Amiens Cathedral. 

The north portal of Westminster is not only, as 
Scott pointed out, more like the west front of a 
^ . typical French church than anything 

else we have to show in England, but 
its design was, I believe, founded on specific study 
of the then just completed front of Amiens. We 
find there three similar steeply-gabled porches 
standing out flush with the lower parts of the 
dividing buttresses ; the fronts of these buttresses 
being divided in each case into two-arched re- 
cesses for statues standing on corbels and ranging 
with those in the central porch (in both cases the 
twelve Apostles), thus making a continuous band 
across the front. Above the lateral porches at 
Amiens the west windows of the aisles are deeply 
set in recesses like a similar curious arrangement 



at Westminster, and still higher the external wall- 
arcade of coupled lights runs right across the front 
beneath the rose window, just as at our transept. 
(Fig. 44.) The bay design of the interior, as will 



JlIIj Jlllllill 



I I 

A A 

1 1 1 1 


Fig. 44, — Diagram of lower part of west front of 
Amiens Cathedral 

be shown below, is derived from Amiens ; even 
the square diaper which covers all the spandrels of 
the arcades at Westminster seems to be taken from 
the similar diaper which adorns the porches of the 
French church. (Fig. 46.) 

On the whole, I consider it to be certain that 
the Westminster church was designed after a 
careful study had been made of the cathedrals of 

Reims and Amiens, and of the Ste. Chapelle, and 


that parts, like the apsidal chapels, are practically 
copied from French prototypes. The old Rose 
window, as will be shown on 
another page, was almost ex- 
actly like several French Roses. 

We may readily make the 
fullest allowance for French 
influence at Westminster, for 
so entirely is it translated into 
the terms of English detail that 
the result is triumphantly 
English. It is a remarkable 
thing, indeed, that this church, 
which was so much influenced 
by French facts, should, in spirit^ 
be one of the most English of 
English buildings. This, per- 
haps, is only to be felt by those 
accustomed to read what is in 
buildings and cannot easily be 

We have the testimony of 
Viollet-le-Duc that the con- 
struction of its vaults followed 
a fashion quite distinct from 
the general French tradition 
of the time. 

Considering the unity and 
exquisite beauty of the com- 
pleted church and its re- 
semblance to French work, we might suppose that 
it was the result of unfettered genius working on 
these elements ; as a matter of fact, the walls overlie 


Fig. 45. — Diagram of bay 
of the interior, Amiens 


the ancient foundations of the Confessor*s church 
to such an extent that it is, as regards plan, rather 
a rebuilding than a fresh departure. Its general 
form, indeed, is so French partly because it was 
rebuilt on early lines, for a French church hardly 
ever developed like an English one by being drawn 
out far to the east. Such conditions of planning 
must have precluded any system of abstract pro- 
portioning such as Scott looked for. 

That Master Henry, who, as will be shown, was 
the master mason at the Abbey from its commence- 
ment, was an Englishman is proved sufficiently by 
his work ; that he had no other name than Henry 
goes to show that he was a London man. 

Fig. 46. — Diaper from the West 
front, Amiens Cathedral 



Construction : The Original Forms : Course of the Work. 

The most singular characteristic of the church is 
the way in which the chapels of the chevet are 
^ carried up so as to form a second storey 

"on the triforium level. In many French 
churches of the Gothic period there are 
important triforium storeys, lighted by a second 
row of windows over those of the aisles. Such a 
triforium, however, where it passes around the 
apse at the east end, usually follows the width of 
the ambulatory only. I know of no parallel to the 
scheme of Westminster, but the dignity attained 
by the group of tall chapels is as impressive as it is 

As a result of adapting a new church to the old 
cloister a remarkable contrivance was resorted to, 
whereby, notwithstanding the limits imposed by 
the cloister, the South Transept might seem to 
have double aisles like that to the North. The angle 
of the cloister occupies the lower half of the western 
aisle of the South Transept, but the upper half is 
open to the church, forming thus a floor inter- 
mediate between the ground level and the tri- 
forium. (Fig. II.) The great height of the 
arcades made this possible. The height of the 
ground arcade and the acute form of its arches 
are only factors in the great interior height of 

* At Valenciennes the transeptal chapels and that at the east end, the 
middle one of three apsidal chapels, rose to the upper storey. 



the building which much overpasses any other 
English church. It is 30 ft. to the top of the 
capitals, 45 to the apex of the arches, 48.3 to the 
string under the triforium, and 63 to that under the 
clerestory. In the presbytery it is 76.3 to the 
springing of the vault, 86.6 to the 
springing of the windows, 99 ft. to 
the bosses of the vaulting, and just 
exactly 100 ft. to the apex of the 
interior vault surface.* 

The presbytery floor is about 3 ft. 

above the level of the aisles and 

^^ transepts. The normal width of 

Fig. 47.— Vault at ^^^ ^^7^ ^^ about 19 ft. ft"om Centre 

Avcsnicrs, near to Centre. The sidc bays of the 

Laval: c, 11 80 presbytery are only about 17.0, and 

the height is thus six times the 

dimension. If the whole height be divided into 

six parts, it will be found that the ground storey 

occupies three parts, the triforium one part, and 

the clerestory two parts. This relation of parts 

so closely agrees with the Amiens bays that we 

must suppose that it was derived from that 


The Westminster vaults resemble those of France 
in their height, but they follow, as said above, 
a different scheme from that which was in general 
use in France, although this scheme, which be- 
came the favourite English fashion, was occa- 
sionally resorted to by the French. (Fig. 47.) 

In the Westminster system the courses of the 
filling instead of being, as in French work, shaped 

♦ Sec drawings in "Arch. Assoc. Sketch Book/' 1891. 


so that as they rise they work out parallel to the 
ridge, are set across the web of the vault and 
allowed to strike at the apex as they may against a 
ridge rib, or a sort of 
notched backbone. Al- 
though in some of the 
vaults so done there may 
be a little shaping of the 
courses, by this method so 
much care is not neces- 
sary as there would be to 
work them out exactly to 
the ridge line. (Fig. 48.) 
The later developments 
brought about by this 
method were, as Viollet- 
le-Duc says, " no caprice 
or question of taste, but 

the rigorous application F,g. 48.-DiagramofVault of 
of a method followed out Aisles at Westminster 

to its deductions.** The 

method of making the courses of the filling 
fall on the diagonal ribs appears to have brought 
about the English fashion of rebating the ribs ; 
and that, in turn, led to covering up our vaults 
with a second layer, usually of concrete, which 
bound all together. This second layer is found 
at Westminster. It also led, quite naturally, to 
a greater subdivision of the vault surfaces by 
additional ribs, and over the choir we find that 
the vault, Which is, perhaps, not more than 
ten years later than that to the east, has deve- 
loped them. Such vaults with additional ribs 

I 129 


required also ridge ribs against which the inter- 
mediates might abut. In the choir vault the ridge 
rib is made much of, being carved throughout. 
Ridge ribs appear also in the earlier vaults to 

^^ the east wrhere they re- 
ceive the ends of the 
filling courses, which run 
into them at an angle. 
In the smaller bays of 

/VN^t/ ^^^ ^^^^^ there are no 
J/..jfVf ridge ribs, but such 
support for the filling 
courses was felt to be 
desirable in the greater 
compartments. The fill- 
ing is of chalk with 
courses of harder stone 
at intervals. 

The clerestory win- 
dows are pushed high 
up into the vaults (Fig. 49) ; they spring i o ft. above 
the springing of the vaulting and consequently the 
fillings of the vault, between the windows, are little 
more than vertical strips of walling on the back of 
the transverse ribs. This portion of the work is 
jointed horizontally for about 16 ft., and the sheaf of 
ribs is jointed horizontally for about 6 ft. above 
the caps. The diagonal ribs in the presbytery seem 
to " wind *' a little in plan, so that they diverge 
quicker from one another than they would on a 
normal course. 

It should be noticed in the aisles that the trans- 
verse members of the vault are much more sub- 

Fig. 49. — Relation of Vault to 
Clerestory Windows 


stantial than the diagonal ones. They are arches 
rather than ribs. In the main vault of the presby- 
tery there is a similar difference, but it is not so 
marked, the transverse ribs being three inches 
bigger.* The arches of the main arcade have 

i I I I I I I [ I lil I ) 
Fig. 50. — Diagonal and Transverse Ribs of Vault over Presbytery 

a radius of at least twice the span. Notice the 
distortion of the arch leading from the South 
Transept to the ambulatory caused by the desire 
to make the apex centre with the triforium. 

The sections of early mouldings were designed 
within a general square bounding form ; late mould- 
ings usually conform to a slanting plane. In the 
mouldings of Westminster the groups of projecting 
members seem generally to be included within 
imaginary segments of circles, which satisfactorily 
echo the roundness of the pillars. The section 
of the great arches, however, approximate in their 
lower order to the chamfer plane. (Fig. 51.) 

* 15x15 ins. and 12x12 ins. (See Fig. 50.) 



Above some of the capitals there is a seating- 
block from which the mouldings rise. It is not 
used consistently throughout, but its proper mean- 

FiG. 51. — Section of Mouldings of Ground Arcade in Presbytery 

ing may be thus explained. If we design an arch 
section having deeply-indented hollows and bring 
two of these together, as they would be at the 
springing over a capital, then the bearing area of 
stone may at this point seem dangerously weakened, 
may, in fact, be less strong than the column be- 
neath. Now a seating at the springing of the 
arches will swallow up the hollows of the mouldings 
until the arches have diverged far enough to be of 
any desired sectional strength. That this feature 
is not used throughout we may explain best by the 


fact that portions of the work (like so many arches) 
were done by " task-work.*' Some of the masters 
thought this seating desirable and others did not. 
In the triforium there are 
variants of these seatings 
in carved super-capitals. 

(Fig. 52.) 

Another interesting 

feature of the construc- 
tion is the very large scale 
of the traceried windows 
of the clerestory, aisles, 
and chapels, and the way 
in which those of the 
ground floor occupy a 
whole compartment to 
the absorption of the 
wall.* In the exterior 
re-entering angle, between pairs of adjoining 
chapels on the north and the south sides of the 
chevet, even the exterior jambs have disappeared, 
and only the buttress remains, to which the glazing 
is made fast. (Figs. 53 and 59.) In the same 
faces of the chapels in the triforium storey, small 
two-light windows take the place of the triangular 
windows generally used in the triforium, but which 
were too wide for this situation. From the inside 
this change of window seems a not to be explained 

* The lights in the end bays of the transepts must be 5 ft. wide ; 
the clerestory lights are 4 ft. i in. wide to the east, and 4 ft. 6 in. in the 
choir. The windows of the south aisle, which by reason of the cloister 
outside have to be made shorter than these to the north, are so contrived 
that this difference is hardly noticeable. 


Fig. 52. — Super-Capitals of 

Fig. 53. — Arrangement of Windows in Apsidal Chapels 


caprice, but there are no such whims at Westminster. 
i^^S' S3-) The way the windows of the South 
Transept are grouped together into one composition 
of a windowed wall is very advanced for the date. 
(Fig. 6.) The six lancets below, the three couplets 
of the middle stage, and the rose above, are all on 
the way to run together and form one great traceried 

Fig. 54. — Plans of Main Piers : east and west of the crossing 

window. This principle was being actively worked 
out in Francein the middle of the thirteenth century. 
In the transept ends the wall surface is entirely 
occupied by windows and arcades. For an 
ordinary bay the only plain wall spaces are the 
strips by the clerestory windows ; all the rest is 
covered with diapering. There are no other such 
great squared rose windows as those of the West- 
minster transepts in England. The foiled roses 
of the ordinary windows are cut out of thin slab- 
like stones, and inserted in grooves in the circles 
in the early French fashion. (Cusped heads of 
lights in the Cloister and Chapter House were 
also separately inserted.) The leaded glazing was 
attached to wood frames set in external rebates 


and hooked back to interior iron bars which pass 
across the openings. The double plane of tracery 
to the triforium is at once very beautiful, and very 
rigid construction. 

An interesting instance of the modification of a 
form by practical work-shop reasoning may be 
observed in the marble pillars of the choir west of the 
crossing. (Fig. 54.) To the east they are made up of 

Fig. 55. — Bronze band (full size) 

a central drum and four small circular shafts ; to the 
west there are eight shafts, four attached and four 
free, and a stronger, richer pillar is thus obtained 
out of the same amount of marble and with less 
expenditure of labour. These same pillars have 
bands of bronze^ instead of marble, which are 
moulded, but hardly more than an inch in thickness ; 
they must be cast, I suppose. They keep the lead 
in the joints from being squeezed out. All the 
small marble shafts are seated on lead. 

Where such shafts are grouped about the built- 
up pillars of the great arcade, which are also ot 
marble, they are attached by moulded bands which 
divide the height into sections not too long for 

slender monoliths. These bands were built in 


with the columns, but the shafts were not put in 
place until the general building work was com- 
pleted and had settled. The beds of these bands 
and the upper surface of the bases and lower 
surface of the capitals were sunk out a quarter of 
an inch or so, and the slender shafts being cut 
exactly the right length, so that they would slip 

Fig. 56. — Profiles of Capitals from S. Transept 

readily into place, molten lead was run into the 
beds at the top by means of a hole drilled in 
each capital (Fig. 51) ; below, I suppose, through 
the bands. The slender marble vaulting shafts in 
lengths averaging about eight feet were fixed after 
the walling had been done by means of iron cramps 
leaded into the walls. 

I have spoken of the variety in the way in which 
the arches spring above the capitals. There is 
throughout constant change in the smaller details 
like the forms of the caps. Thus, in the row of four 
in an upper stage of South Transept the profile is 
different in every case. (Fig. 56.) In the arch orna- 
mentation of the triforium at the end of the South 



Transept the three bays have arches moulded, 
carved, and diapered respectively, and this varia- 

FiG. 57. — Buttress System S. Side of Choir 

tion in groups of three is continued in the eastern 

limb. On the east side of the North Transept the 


arches are carved alternately with giant "dog-tooth" 
a foot square, and with rosettes set over a moulding. 

The flying buttresses are highly developed. 
Owing to the fact that the buttresses of the south 
side have to pass across the cloister, they have to be 
of enormous size. (Fig. 57.) From the outside 
face of the buttress in the cloister-green to the plane 
of the clerestory is, measured horizontally, 50 ft. 
There are first three tiers of fliers over the cloister, 
and two tiers above over the aisle, that is, five 
fliers in all to each " archiboutant." In the tri- 
forium at the back of each of the bay-piers is 
a shaft with a proper base above the floor. These 
shafts are not carried to completion above, and it 
is not at once evident what their meaning is. The 
fliers of French buttresses usually rest above on 
the capitals of such shafts, and these were for the 
same purpose. If my memory is not faulty, one or 
two of them just come above the lead roof of the 
triforium at present. (See Fig. 57.) 

The transept ends are efl?ectively buttressed : at 
the south by the vaulted chapel of St. Faith and 
the buttressing arch which passes across it : at the 
north by the deep porches and the arcaded wall 
above, which is of great thickness. Within the 
church the whole construction was, from the first, 
laced up with iron to an extent which is without 
parallel. At Vezelay the high vaults had iron 
transverse ties, the hooks for which still remain. 
In William of Sens' work, at Canterbury, the arcade 
around the eastern transept is stayed with iron. 
At Westminster there are not only continuous longi- 
tudinal ties to the arcades, but others pass across the 



aisles, so that in some perspectives four or five bars 
may be seen crossing at different angles. (Fig- 58.) 

At the triforium there are 
two continuous iron bands 
which pass along at the 
springings of the doubled 
planes of tracery. Certain 
rods which stand clear ot 
the glass at the back of the 
windows of the chapels 
are also, I believe, ancient 
and continuous. Other 
ties thread the end win- 
dows high up in the aisles 
of the North Transept. 
The Chapter House had 
eight rods passing from 
the central stem to the ribs, 
just like those in an um- 
brella, but of these only 
the hooks remain. 

It is certain that the 

F,c.58.-Diagram showing Iron jf^'^ ^'^' Were part of the 

Tie-bars of the Interior first Construction. Wren 

speaks of the original 
architect having tied the arches every way with 
iron ; but many of them, he says, had been 
" unhooked." Some are shown in position in the 
engraving in Sandford's " Burial of the Duke of 
Albemarle" (1670). There are several of them 
which are not attached by hooks, but are built into 
the work directly, and some, or all, of these are not 
mere square rods, but are slightly shaped, so that 


they rise to a peak in the centre of the span ; these 
are certainly of thirteenth-century workmanship. 
(Fig. 62, iiii.) 

The long Fabric Roll of 1253 shows that in that 
year a large quantity of iron was brought from 
Gloucester for the works ; and in this year there 
were no less than nineteen smiths at one time 
engaged on the building. The shorter summary 
for 1253, ^^^^ ^^ ^^^ Record Office, gives a special 
item to the iron used for " nails and other pur- 
poses." — In r^ IX^ ferri tenacis de Glouerna xx£. 
In this, nearly three tons of iron, we must, I think, 
have the material from which many of the ties 
were made. 

It is perhaps impossible to get a clear idea as to 
the exact relation of the Lady Chapel of 1220 to 
f\ ' ' / the cAevet of 1245. "^^^ chapel must 
p ^ have been considerably modified when, 

in 1256 vaults took the place of the 
wood roof And as the plan of its apsidal ter- 
mination seems most suitable for a vaulted structure, 
it is possible that it was lengthened, or even com- 
pletely rebuilt, at this time. 

The arch and responds at the east of the cAevet 
seem to have been exactly like those opening 
into the other radiating chapels (Fig. 59), and 
I think there must have been an ante-chapel 
somewhat as at present, which, on the triforium 
stage, formed an eastern projection belonging 
to the main structure. (Fig. 60.) At the 
triforium level it is evident that the present 
wall of the eastern bay is a late insertion, and in 


Fig. 59. — Sketch Plan of Apidal Chapels, showing the passage along windows 


the end walls of the two lateral chapels, which 
come next to the centre, arches may be seen 
which were once exactly like those between other 
pairs of the triforium chapels, but which are now 

Fig. 6o. — Suggested relation of Apse and 
Lady Chapel 

walled up. This eastern triforium chapel was 
swept away, I suppose, to make the open area at 
the west of Henry VII/s chapel for the sake of its 
great west window. All the work connected with 
this space is of late date. The intermediate work of 
Henry V.'s tomb complicates the problem. (Fig.6i.) 



The window over the reredos of Henry V.'s 
chantry seems to be Henry VII /s work, and 
below there has been some modification in the 
eastern piers which support the chantry. Only 
the western half of these piers is Henry V.'s 

Ugi^ /S\ work, and the central 

^ fl"^'^^^ m B opening has been al- 

'* ^^ L _ - HL. ^^red. It looks as if 

^ ^J^P there had been a screen 

•^{^"r^ ^^^ here in Henry V/s 

\?y^ work, and that the Lady 

Fig. 6i.— Various worb at entrance Chapel WaS entered 

to Lady Chapel only by the two lateral 

The central lantern tower was probably designed 
to rise not much above the ridge of the roof, some- 
thing like the earlier parts of the central towers of 
Wells and Salisbury. We shall see that this " tower " 
is mentioned as early as 1 274. The structure still 
shows some provision for it in the squinch arches 
made to let the parapet-walk pass the angles of the 
tower. We have seen that the vault over the 

* The ends of the wall passages which pass along the window-sills of 
the chapels are blocked to the east by masonry. (Fig. 59.) That is, the 
passage was not continued beyond these points, and therefore we may 
be certain that there was never an eastern chapel of the same form as 
the others, with only low openings to the Lady Chapel. (The cast 
window in the north-east chapel has its sill some five feet higher up 
than the others, and this seems to be the original arrangement, and is 
evidence of some obstruction outside.) My supposition is that there 
was a square eastern projection forming a chapel on the triforium floor, 
and a vestibule to the Lady Chapel below : I cannot think that when 
the Lady Chapel was much lower than at present there appeared an 
awkward interval in the ring of chapels. 


crossing was never built ; this can only mean that 
it was intended to be at a higher level altogether. 
I suppose the original intention was to have a low 
lantern tower as at Laon,with pairs of windows on 
each face, and a pyramidal roof above. 

That the old choir of the " Basilica " was de- 
stroyed before the commencement of Henry HI.'s 

ci-L n work is shown by the extreme accuracy 

The Course r^i ^,. / r.u i ^i. i. : 

r. , or the settmg out of the plan throughout. 

^ , If a transverse view across the church 

is taken from St. John Baptist's 

chapel, it will be seen that the ridges of the vaults 

and centres of the arches are so perfectly in line 

that it is obvious that the setting out was done 

with the most careful accuracy on a cleared site. 

(Fig. 59.) The new work appears to have been 

begun with the eastern and three northern bays of 

the apse with the corresponding chapels. The bases 

of the pillars here with deep hollows are those we 

have spoken of as imitated from Reims, while 

westward in the choir, as well as in the transepts, 

a much simpler form for working in marble has 

been substituted. To this same portion of the 

apse, across the springings of the arches, and across 

the aisles, are wooden ties, whereas throughout the 

rest of this work iron ties occupy similar positions. 

(Fig. 62.) It might be thought that the wooden ties 

were comparatively recent stays but there has been no 

reason for their insertion at any time subsequent to 

the first erection of the tall pillars, and such wooden 

ties were frequently used in the erection of French 

works. Moreover, a further proof of their being a 

ic 145 


part of the first scheme is to be seen in the capitals 
of the columns between which they stretch. These 
capitals are of a curiously plain profile, the bell not 
being undercut as is the case in the neighbouring 
capitals where the iron rods are used. After the 
first marble bases were fixed it must have been easy 
to see that the profile might be simplified without 

Fig, 62. — Various ties to the arches of the Chevet 

harm, and it would have been equally apparent 
that the capitals required improvement. The next 
portion of the work comprised three bays on the 
south side which have iron ties which pass through 
the caps of the piers. Later it was found better to 
build in only hooks to which the ties might be 
attached afterwards. This third plan continues 
throughout the first work. In the later work of 
the nave no permanent ties were used. 

An interesting modification in the marble work 
was made in the piers immediately to the west of 
the crossing as pointed out on p. 135. 

A somewhat similar simplification of the marble 
work is to be seen in the piers in the centre of the 
bays of the triforium of the North Transept, where 
the shafts are also worked in beds. 


I know of course, that Mr. Micklethwaite, who 
is almost an infallible authority on the Abbey, has 
expressed the view that it was some time after the 
beginning of the works in 1245 when the east end 
of the old church was pulled down ; that portions 
were first built round about it outside, and that the 

Fig. 63. — Diagram showing junction of the larger and later 
diaper, with the earlier, on N. side of Presbytery 

earliest of these parts was the North Transept. But 
against this I would set not only the alternative 
reading I propose, but the clear testimony of the 
Chronicles and Fabric Rolls, and the evidence 
afforded by the speed with which the work was 
pressed on to completion. The extreme accuracy 
of all the setting out points to the same con- 
clusion. Since getting so far I have observed a 
proof of this reading of the problem. In the first 
and second bays of the presbytery on the north 
side is to be seen what Mr. Vacher, on his care- 
fully measured drawings, calls a " mason's muddle " 
in the diapering above the great arches. To the 
east the diaper is smaller, to the west it is bolder ; 
the latter overlaps the former in such a way as to 













show that it was a subsequent work. Now the 
whole of the eastern limb of the church, except the 
small portion at the end of the north side, is 
covered with the earlier diapering. (Fig. 63.) 
So also is the east side of the South Transept, but 
the North Transept has the bolder diaper, which is 
in continuation of that which overlaps the earlier 
as just described. In the South Transept, more- 
over, there are one or two of the early form of 
capitals. The work began at the east end, the 
south side of the presbytery followed, and the 
South Transept. The North Transept would have 
been delayed by the great portal. 

The Plan, Fig. 3, and the Section on the 
opposite page show the several stages of the works, 
and there cannot be a doubt as to the correctness 
of the dates assigned to the different parts by Mr. 
Micklethwaite, who has generously lent me these 





Master Henry of Westminster, 1 244-1 253 : Master John of Gloucester, 
1253-1262: Master Robert of Beverley, 1 262-1 280. 

In 1243-4 preparations were being made for the 

rebuilding of the Confessor's church. In this year 

Th IV h ^ mandate was addressed by the king to 

f juf f the Sheriff of Kent to provide one 

Zj r hundred barges of grey stone for the 

Tj^ y ^ works to be undertaken at Westminster, 

. ~ of which W. deHaverhuUe, the treasurer, 

' and Edward were keepers.* Edward 

^^" was son of Odo, the goldsmith, men- 

^^* tioned above, and succeeded him as one 

of the keepers of the King's Works. In the 

" Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London " 

we find William de '* Haverille '* and Edward of 

Westminster acting together four years later, when, 

on a quarrel arising between the king and the City 

authorities, the king took the City into his own 

hand and entrusted it to the custody of these two. 

This shows what manner of man was this Edward 

of Westminster, whom Hudson Turner and William 

Burges, without sufficient evidence, called the 

architect of the Abbey church.-f- In 1244 the 

king ordered the same keepers to see that the 

Knight's Chamber in the Palace of Westminster 

should be finished before Easter, even if they had 

* Walpole. Flints or Ragstone for the foundations. 

t He was smelter to the Exchequer, then treasurer, and is called 
king's clerk. 


to employ a thousand men.* This employment ot 
a thousand men is a characteristic exaggeration in 
the king's speech, of which there are many 

The Sheriff of Kent in 1244-5 ^^^ instructed 
to prevent stone being taken to London except for 
the works of Westminster. London 
was to suffer a great deal on ac- 
count of these same works ! 

In this year the Sheriff of York 
was commanded to go " with 
Simon the carpenter and Henry 
the masofty whom the king sends 
with other experienced persons," 
to see how York Castle might be 
fortified..| This Henry, who was 
sent on such an important com- 
mission, was probably the king's „ , ,, 

r - r t Fig. 6c. — Masons and 

favourite master mason of the Carpenter. .. 1270. 
time, and from what will appear From MS " Life of 
below we may say that it is likely the Confessor " 
that he was already engaged as 
"architect" of the new Abbey church. The 
king's carpenter in charge of the works at 
Windsor in this year was Master Simon, and I 
find no other mason than this Henry mentioned 
in the Close Rolls at this time ; St. George's 
Chapel at Windsor was begun in 1240, and he 

♦ Close Rolls, 28 Henry III. 

t In this year three keepers were ordered to hang the bells, 
the king's gift to the church — in the old west towers we may 

t Sharpe's MS. Calendar of Close Rolls. 


may have been master there together with Simon 
the carpenter.* 

As to the beginning of actual building at the 
Abbey church we have very exact information. 
Under the year 1245 Matthew of Paris writes that 
the eastern part of the church, and the tower, were 
pulled down, and Matthew of Westminster and 
Rishanger give the very day. " The king caused 
the greater part of the Conventual Church of the 
Blessed Peter to be pulled down, beginning on the 
day week after the feast of the Apostles Peter and 
Paul." Work was therefore begun on July 6, 
1245, directly after the annual feast of the patron 
of the church, and the first step was the demolition 
of the greater part of the Confessor's building. 
This point is of some consequence, as Mr. Mickle- 
thwaite has endeavoured to show how the work 
was in part conditioned by its walls being built, 
portions at a time, outside the ancient work. We 
have further confirmation of the destruction of the 
old church in the fact that the royal persons of 
old buried by the altar appear at this time to have 
been exhumed. In 1244-5 (29 Henry III.) it was 
ordered that a cope should be ornamented with 
needlework of gold found on the body of Queen 

♦ The two successors of Master Henry at Westminster were also 
concurrently masters at Windsor. Master John of Gloucester is 
mentioned in connection with the works there in 1255, and Master R. 
de Beverley in 1260. As a possible set off to this reasoning, it may be 
stated that in 1 248 certain work at Windsor was done by the council of 
Thomas the mason and Simon the carpenter. In 1252 Thomas the 
mason of Windsor and his wife received robes. He was evidently a 
master, and may have been in charge from 1 240 to the exclusion of 
Master Henry. 


Edith, wife of St. Edward. Again, in 1 246, a new 
abbot had to be elected, and Matthew of West- 
minster tells us how Crokesley was chosen as being 
agreeable to the king, on whose goodwill the work 
at the then " half-destroyed " church depended. 

The Constable of the Tower was in 1245-6 
ordered to deliver stone, mortar, timber, &c., to 
the master of the works at Westminster^ and to 
Edward.* This master of the works other than 
Edward must be the chief mason, and below we 
shall find Henry the mason called by this title. 
The short indentures, called Feet of Fines, of the 
year 1246-7, give us an interesting piece of con- 
tributory evidence as to the presence of Henry the 
mason. Two messuages at Westminster were at 
this time acquired by Master Henry, Cenientarius, 
and at the Record Office we may still see a copy 
of the deed whereby the master mason of the 
church took possession of his dwelling. -f- 

At the Record Office there are also two Rolls ot 
Accounts of the Fabric at Westminster of the years 
33-37 Henry HLJ The first of these is headed : 
" Receipts for the Fabric of the Church of St. 
Peter, Westminster, XXXIH. year of King Henry, 
Fourth Year from the Commencement of the Works" 
(1248-9). Similar accounts for the fifth, sixth, 
seventh, and eighth years follow on the same 
document, and the total receipts for these years is 
given : for the fourth, jC^^^S \ ^^^ ^^^ ^it\ ^26oo ; 
for the sixth, £^^\l^ ; for the seventh, ^2^2$ ; for 
the eighth, ^^2042. And in addition there is a note 

♦ Close Roll. t Sec Hardy and Page, Feet of Fines. 

X Exchequer Worb, Q.R. 466, 29 and 30. 



on the back of the Roll of the total receipts for the 
^rj/five years of the works, amounting to j^ 10,751, 
and we can consequently make up the total cost for 
the first eight years of the work, />., iC^7»933- 

Early in the Roll, that is, in the fourth year's 
account, occur the names of Dominus Edwardus^ 
ClericuSy and Magister Henricus^ Cementarius. 

Looking down this earliest account the following 
details may be noted : In the fourth year " Master 
H." answers for j^6o received. Master Alexander 
(carpenter) is seen to be engaged on the spire of 
the belfry, and Master Odo (carpenter) is also 
named. Master Alberic received ^45 for " task- 
work " on the cloister. Task-work means what we 
call piece-work, and it is evident from the large 
sum (worth, say, j^iooo) that he must have had 
several assistants, and that he was carrying out a 
contract for the workmanship of those bays of the 
cloister which belong to the first work. Master 
Richard Paris was also paid loos. for working 
marble. John Sentori (St. Omer), a painter, is also 

In the fifth year Master Henry had 40 marks given 
him (jC26 13s. 4d.) for task-work, and Master 
Alexander, carpenter, Z^ot 13s. 4d. for timber. 
In the sixth year (1250-51) John of St. Omer, 
painter, and Peter (de Hispania, also a painter) are 
named. In the seventh year 40 marks was again 
paid to Master Henry for task-work. Of the 
eighth year of the works (37 Henry III.) there is 
a separate short Roll entitled " Account of Divers 
Operations at the Church, Chapter House, Belfry,"* 

♦ Works, Q.R. 466, 30. 



&c. In it occurs an entry mentioning " Master 
John, with a carpenter and assistant at St. Alban's, 
working on the lectern." We know from another 
source that Master John of St. Omer, one of the 
most famous painters of this time, was instructed in 
1249 ^^ make a lectern for the new Chapter 
House, like one at St. Albans, " only more beauti- 
ful if it might be."* In our accounts we see 
Master John executing the order. The lectern 
which he was to emulate was probably the work of 
Walter of Colchester, the "incomparable" artist of 
St. Alban's, whose praises are sung by Matthew of 
Paris. We also find a payment for two images 
made by task-work, 53s. 4d. These, it has been 
suggested,"!* ™^y ^^ none other than the lovely 
Annunciation Group which stands within the door- 
way of the Chapter House, which we know from 
another payment for canvas to close its windows, 
mentioned in this same account, was at this moment 
being fitted up. 

The South Transept of the church must have 
been carried up with the cloister, which, in fact, 
forms part of it, and which we saw was in hand in 
1248-9. The whole body of the work must at 
this time have been well advanced. In that same 
year the independent belfry, which Stow tells us 
had a tall leaded spire, was having this spire erected 
by Alexander the carpenter and William the 
plumber. It stood on the north side of the church 
on the site later occupied by the Guildhall. In 
the account for 1253, twenty-four carpenters and 
nine plumbers appear as busy at it, and it was pro- 

♦ Close Roll, and Walpole. t Mr. E. S. Prior. 



bably completed in this year, as a special item of 
£iS7j expenses for the belfry, appears on the 

While the bell-house was being finished its bells 
were being cast. In 1 249-50 a mandate was issued 
to Edward to cause a bell to be cast larger than 
those made the year before. Another order directs 
that four bells should be made from the metal 
which remained from the great bell. The next 
year a bell answering to the great bell in tone, but 
smaller, was to be made. In 1252-3 Edward was 
commanded to cause the large new bell to be hung 
and rung by the eve of the Feast of St. Edward.* 
In 41 Hen. III. a payment was made for the 
year 1254-5 to the Brethren of the Guild at 
Westminster, appointed to ring the great bells.-f- 
The great bells of Westminster must have been 
amongst Henry III.'s most famous gifts to the 
church, for in a marginal drawing of Matthew 
Paris, in the British Museum copy of his work, 
appears a rough representation of the new church, 
the gold shrine, and the four great bells.J (Fig. 40.) 
All these works in progress simultaneously show 
the energy with which the king pressed forward 
his scheme. In 1249-50 the SheriflFof Kent was 
instructed to order all persons having grey stone 
for sale to carry it to Westminster. And in this 
year the Pope sent the king an indulgence in 
favour of any who should lend a helping hand 
towards the church " of wonderful beauty " being 
built by him.§ 

♦ Close Rolls, 34 k 37 Henry III. t Issue Roll. 

t See also Stow's account. § ** Papal Letters," Rolls Series. 



The next year the king issued a command that 
the Sacristy should be built 120 feet long. A large 
Sacristy was certainly required for the vast treasure 

which Matthew of Westminster 

says was 


equalled on this side of the Alps.* 
Sacristy be represented by foun- 
dations discovered on the north 
side of the choir ? (Fig. 66.) 

In this same year (1250—51), 
the king commanded that 600 or 
800 men should work at the 
church, and in the next year a 
mandate was addressed to "Henry, 
Master of the Works," to expe- 
dite the marble-work.-f- 

In 1252-3 the king ordered 
that timber should be obtained 
for the roof of the new work of ^'^- ^^: 
the church, and for the stalls 
of the monks in the same; also 
that a chapel should be made for the new work 
of the shrine of St. Edward, the walls to be 
of plaster of Paris painted with the history of 
St. Edward, and with a lower chamber which was 
to have the history of St. Eustace painted on it, 
and, in the gable window, the story of Solomon 
and Marculph. This chapel, together with the 
workshop where the Confessor's new golden shrine 

• In the Flctc MS., the Galilee of the Sacristy, called the Cellarium, 
is mentioned in the '^Life of Crokesley." In 1251 the King gave by 
charter to the Convent and the Sacristy the houses, v^ith the v^all of 
the graveyard on the north, which should not be alienated from the 
Sacristy. t Close Rolls, 34-36 Henry III. 


on the north side of 
the Choir 


was being made, was probably in the palace, as 
when, in 1 269, the church was dedicated we are 
told that the shrine was brought from the palace 
on the shoulders of the king, his brother and 
others. We hear in the year 1 307 of a Marculph*s 
chamber in the palace. 

The Fabric Roll, edited by Willis in Scott's 
" Gleanings," gives minute particulars of all that 
was going on week by week in 1253.* The 
account for each week begins with the wages 
paid ; for instance, in a single week we have : To 
wages of 39 cutters of white stone, 15 marblers, 
26 stone-layers, 32 carpenters, John and his partner 
at St. Alban*s (two painters), with an assistant, 13 
polishers (of marble), 19 smiths, 14 glaziers, and 
4 plumbers, together ^^15 los. id., an average of 
IS. lod. a week to each workman. To wages of 176 
inferior workmen, with overseers and clerks, and 
two horse-carts, £() 17s. 2d., about gd. a week. 

The name of Master Henry may be represented 
on this Roll in the short heading which begins the 
account of disbursements — Emptiones Henr Fab' — 
that is, I suppose, disbursements paid out by 
Master Henry on account of the fabric.*i^ The 
name of a Master Henry also occurs in connection 
with the glass issued for the making of the windows. 
Willis thought that this Henry was the glazier, but 
there is no other evidence of this, and we do hear 

♦ The original is at the Record Office. Works Q.R. 467, i. 

t The only other meaning I can imagine is that Henr. Fab. 
means Henry the smith. If Henry, the mason, were dead, Master Henry, 
the smith, may have been the senior at the works. In this case Master 
John of Oxford, mentioned below, may now have been the mason. 



of Lawrence, the glazier. It seems likely that the 
glass was handed out from the store to the master 
of the works. Master Alberic is mentioned three 
times in this Roll, and he was paid considerable 
sums for "form pieces," that is, tracery for the 
windows, and other wrought stone work ; and it 
is noted on the back of the Roll that at a certain 
time he had begun three windows " by task.'* In 
the shorter Roll of this year mentioned above his 
name appears also, and he is there said to have 
been engaged on the entrance to the Chapter 
House. It seems that we may definitely assign 
the bays of the cloister leading to the Chapter 
House, and the entrance of the latter to Master 

Bernard de Sea Osida was paid 14s. 8d. for 
588 ft. of asselars (squared stones) by task. 
The price, confirmed by other instances, being 
40 ft. for a shilling, and it follows that a mason 
receiving wages of is. 6d. to 2S. wrought from 
60 to 80 ft. in a week. This, of course, was 
axe-faced work, such as we may see in the 
interior of St. Faith's Chapel, where we can trace 
the notches and size of the tool used. Henry de 
Chersaltoun was paid 26d. for 650 ft. of chalk in 
the vault fillings (pendentia) wrought by task; and 
Ade de Aldewyche and companions received i4S.8d. 
for 5500 ft. of the same. John Benet was paid 
3s. for three capitals, and Master William de Waz 
received 15s. 6d. for setting stone. Besides these 

♦ We have seen that the system of task -work was largely made use 
ofy and Master Alberic seems to have been engaged in the execution of 
such work from the beginning. 

I $9 


the names occur of Henry the smith, Jacob the 
junctor (joiner), Roger and William the plumbers, 
Lawrence the glazier, and many others. 

In this year, in one week, as many as seventy- 
eight white-stone cutters, and forty-nine marblers, 
with fifteen polishers and fourteen setters were 
engaged. The large number of marble workers 
and polishers bring home to us how that the 
church was largely built of marble ; the shafts, 
mouldings, and even some of the carving being 
highly polished. In this long Roll of 1253 are 
some letters to John of Oxford from Robert de 
Bremele at the marble quarry. I cannot decide 
whether John was a clerk or a foreman. In the 
palace accounts for 1259 the name of John of 
Oxford, mason, occurs, but he was only receiving 
ordinary wages. 

From this time Master Henry disappears from 
the accounts, and he was almost directly, as will 
be shown, succeeded by another master. In look- 
ing back over the references which I have given, 
we seem to be justified in saying that he must 
have been in charge of the work from its beginning 
until about the end of 1253. At this time the 
work was so far advanced that Master Henry must 
be considered as the architect of the building in all 
its parts. It cannot be doubted that he, like his 
successors, held the official position of Cementarius 
Regis, king's mason.* 

* In an account of work at Winchester Castle, in 1258, a Master 
Henry, Cementarius, is mentioned ; but he is not necessarily the same. 



In 1254-5 John of Gloucester was promised ten 
" librates " of land for his services to the king at 
Th W h Gloucester, Woodstock, Westminster, 
rj^ and elsewhere , and in the same year the 

Z , r king conceded to " Master John of 
iy, ' Gloucester, his mason," (cementario 
^. , ' suo) all tolls and tallage for life. That 
T^jf^ he was actually in charge of works at 

\ Westminster is shown by a mandate in 

'^^"" * which John, the king's mason, is com- 
manded to roof the great sacristy (sacstarie) house 
as soon as possible lest the timbers should be 
damaged. Permission at the same time was given 
to the keepers of the works to take oaks from the 
king s woods.* 

John probably came from Gloucester to West- 
minster, as, in the Close Roll for 124.9-50, there is 
the record of an order to the Sheriff of Gloucester 
not to distrain John le Macun and others for wine 
bought of the king. 

In 1255-6 our mason lent to the Dean of St. 
Martin's le Grand some freestone for the works 
there out of the stores of Westminster. -f- In the 
same year he was commanded to see to some defects 
at the Tower. And there was an important man- 
date issued to Edward of Westminster and Master 
John of Gloucester, Cementarius Regis, that the 
timber of the roof of St. Mary's Chapel (that is, the 
old Lady Chapel begun in 1220) "which is to be 
taken down and rebuilt in stone," be given to St. 
Martin's. In this year, also, five casks of wine 
were to have been returned to John of Gloucester, 

• Close Roll. t Close Roll, 40 Henry III. 

L 161 


mason, for the five which the king took at Oxford. 
We have seen that John had been engaged at 
Woodstock, and the record gives us a fascinating 
glimpse of the king drinking the mason's wine, 
which we may suppose was good. 

Alexander, the king's carpenter, received in this 
year twenty marks for the work at Westminster, 
and inithe year following, 1256-7, it was provided 
that the king's works should be overlooked and 
expedited byjohn, the king's mason, and Alexander, 
the king's carpenter, instead of by the sheriffs and 
bailiffs. At this time John and Alexander received 
furred robes of office twice a year. Odo, the car- 
penter, and others also received furred robes.* 

A Pipe Roll, also of 1256-7, records a payment 
" for marble bought for the church by the view 
and testimony of Master John, mason, and Master 
Alexander, carpenter, keepers of the work.*'-f- The 
entry occurs under Dorset. The marble was, of 
course, Purbeck, and in an account, ten years 
later, it is called " Purbik." 

John, the king's mason, and Alexander, the 
king's carpenter, are mentioned in the Close Roll of 
1257—9, as working at the church. So, also, was 
William de Wantz, Cementarius, who received a 
robe. This last must be the same as the William 
de Waz named in the Fabric Roll of 1253. He was 
probably master of the stone-layers. At this time 
(1258) the keepers of the works are commanded 
to deliver the remainder of the tiles of the Chapter 
House to the Proctor of the Chapel of St. Dunstan 

• Sharpe's MS. Calendar of Close Rolls, 
t " Gleanings,** p. 261. 


underneath the Dormitory. This entry fixes the 
date of the beautiful tiles of the Chapter House, 
and its general completion ; and, moreover, furnishes 
us with the earliest known reference to this chapel. 
In this year also, the important command is re- 
corded in the Close Roll that Edward and the 
Superior, and the Sacrist of the church, should 
"take down the old church as far as the vestry 
which is by the king s seat (vestiariu quod est juxta 
sedem Rs.) so that it may be rebuilt as the work 
begun requires." Work on the altars in various 
parts of the new fabric is also ordered. Both 
these entries imply the substantial completion of 
the first work, and the beginning of the bays to the 
west of the crossing, which have always been 
recognised as of slightly later date than the eastern 
limb and transepts, but which were always assigned 
to the time of Edward I., until Mr. Mickle- 
thwaite, arguing from internal evidence, assigned 
them to an earlier date. 

In the Close Roll of the same year is a mandate 
to Master John of Gloucester, king's mason, and 
one of the keepers of the work, that five images 
of kings cut in freestone, and a stone to support 
an image of the Virgin, be given to the keepers of 
the works of St. Martin's, London.* 

It appears from the report of the Historic MSS. 
Commission (iv. p. 176) that this last is a duplicate 
of one of eleven orders addressed by the king to 
John of Gloucester, Edward of Westminster, and 
Robert of Beverley, " our masons and wardens of 

* It is evident from these frequent references that St. Martin's le 
Grand was largely rebuilt by Henry III. at this time. 



our works," in the years 1258-61, still preserved at 
the Abbey. Amongst the other documents men- 
tioned in the report is a letter from the Sheriff of 
Lincoln regarding lead for the church, and addressed 
to " Master John le Mazun." Another is a letter 
from Richard le Wyte of Purbeck to Master Robert 
of Beverley. An order of 1259, addressed to 
Master John, Cementarius Regis, instructs him to 
have prepared the king's iron lectern for Master 
William to paint. This is William, monk of 
Westminster, spoken of on another occasion as the 
king's beloved painter. 

The king, of course, consulted his master 
mason and master carpenter, officers of his house- 
hold as they were, on most of the royal works 
going forward in the country ; and some of them 
would be " designed " by this ideal " firm of archi- 
tects." In 1 256-7 " the gateway with a chimney " 
and other works at Guildford Castle were wrought 
"by the view and counsel of Master John of 
Gloucester, our mason, and Master Alexander, our 
carpenter." A large part of this gateway still 
stands in Quarry Street, Guildford, and at the back 
we may still see part of the thirteenth-century fire- 
place ordered by Henry IIL An order was issued 
in 1258-9 that the new chapel at Woodstock 
should be paved by the advice of Master John of 
Gloucester, king's mason.* 

In 1260— I an order was issued that the wages of 
John of Gloucester, the king's mason, and Alex- 
ander, the king's carpenter, should be doubled 

• Liberate Rolls. See Hudson Turner's "Domestic Arch.," 
vol. i. ch. 5. 


when travelling to make provision for the church. 
Also that the iron lectern should be put together 
and erected in the new Chapter House.* In this 
year, also, jC4^o were delivered to John, the king*s 
mason, in respect of the works at Windsor. 

We are even able to get some glimpses of the 
private life of John the mason. He is mentioned 
once in 1256-7 in conjunction with some property 
in Southwark.-f- In the same year our Master 
John of Gloucester, mason, had premises consisting 
of a house and curtilage in Westminster ; and four 
little documents at the Record Office refer to this. J 

In 1258 the king rewarded Master John with 
gifts of houses for his praiseworthy services. 

In 1 260-1 the great mason died. In the same 
year " Alice, who was wife of John of Gloucester, 
king's mason," and Edward, his son, are mentioned, 
and as late as 1266 the latter is still called " son of 
the mason." § 

There are many variations in detail between the 
second work of Henry III., begun in 1258, and the 
portion further east. The choir piers have eight 
shafts instead of four ; the high vault has inter- 
mediate ribs — an early instance — and in the span- 
drels of the wall-arcade of the aisles are set very 
beautiful shields of arms of some of Henry's royal 
contemporaries, and others of the great barons of 
the kingdom. Amongst them is that of Simon 
de Montfort. In the variations from the earlier 
portion we may trace the influence of John of 

• Close Rolls, 45 Henry II F. t F. Lewis. Surrey Feet of Fines. 

X Feet of Fines, London and Middlesex, Henry III., Nos. 377-80. 
S C. Roberts. Feet of Fines. 



Gloucester, for this must be reckoned as his 

While John of Gloucester and Alexander, the 
carpenter, were conducting the works at the church 
^ they also overlooked building operations 

R h t A ^^ ^^ neighbouring palace. There are 
n , , two Rolls of their accounts belonging to 
TT^ L the vear 1259.* In the second of these 

, ^ we nnd amongst the names of the masons 

o working under John at the palace the 

name of Robert de Beverley, the mason 
who was to succeed him and carry Henry the 
Third's work at the Abbey to its close. In a 
printed Issue Roll of this time (1259) particulars 
are set out of certain " petty works " at the palace, 
like '' cutting away for altering the king's 
chimney." Robert de Beverley was receiving 3s. 
a week in regard to these works, while ordinary 
cutters and bedders received 2s. 2d. One of these 
was named after his " Fairwife." 

Before considering the mastership of Robert of 
Beverley at the church, we may inquire what re- 
mained to be done on the death of John of 
Gloucester. We have seen that the structure of 
the Chapter House was complete in 1253, and that 
it was entirely finished, and floored, and the lectern 
set up before 1260. The belfry was finished and 
the bells ringing by 1254. When the Roll ot 
1253 opens thirty-two carpenters are shown as 
being employed, and we have seen that an order 
for timber for the roof of the church was given in 

• 4.67, 2 and 3. 


that year, and that the stalls were being made for 
the choir. It cannot be doubted that the masonry 
of the first work — the eastern limb, transepts, and 
crossing — was substantially complete when in 
1255-6 the roof of the old Lady Chapel was 
removed so that it might be vaulted in stone. 
When, three years later, the monks were ordered 
to throw down the old work as far as the king's 
seat (that is, his temporary seat in the Norman 
navej it is probable that considerable preparations 
had already been made for the westward extension ; 
indeed, little can have remained for Robert de 
Beverley to do but to finish the scheme of Master 
Henry and the preparations of Master John. 

Considering the troubles the king was passing 
through at this time the works must have suffered 
some delay. In 1263 Master Robert de Beverley, 
the king's mason, and Master Odo, the carpenter, 
were engaged in repairing the palace after a fire.* 
Accounts for works at the church from 48 to 51 
Henry III. are contained in the Pipe Rolls. Master 
Robert of Beverley, Alexander the Carpenter, and 
John of Spalding, were the keepers of the works. 
Great timber for making the columns at the monks' 
stalls is mentioned ; also tiles for the lodges 
of the workmen {ad domos operiar). The Pipe 
Roll for 1267-8 opens with the statement that 
the accounts are guaranteed by Master Robert de 
Beverley, mason, and Brother Ralph the Convert 
(some Jew clerk) put in the place of Alexander, 
the carpenter, and John of Spalding (also a clerk ?), 
by the king's writ directed to Adam de Stratton, 

• " Gage Rokcwodc," p. 5. 



clerk, warden of the said works.* This entry 
may have been occasioned by the death of Alexan- 
der, the carpenter, to whom I have found no 
further reference. The name of Alexander, the 
carpenter, occurs in 1260— f in connection with 
property at Knightsbridge, where we may suppose 
he had his timber-yard.-f- The roof wrought by 
him still exists at the church. Wren spoke of it 
as "framed in the bad Norman manner," that is, 
every rafter is braced with raking pieces and there 
were no trusses with tie beams. 

Other accounts for works at the church exist for 
the years 1269-70, 1270-71, and 1271-72, the 
last being made up to November before the king 
was buried, by Master Robert de Beverley, mason, 
and by view of Adam de Stratton, clerk of the 
Exchequer. This account includes some glazing 
and paving, painting, and a clock made by task- 
work. There was painting going forward continu- 
ously from 1267. The account of 1269 mentions 
painting of the figures in the church and in the 
great chamber of the king. The windows, how- 
ever, were not fully glazed, as canvas had been 
bought to fill them. Adam de Stratton, the clerk 
to the works, speculated in finance and honesty, 
prospered, and fell.:}: 

The choir was evidently almost completed before 
the translation of the Confessor's body into the new 
shrine in 1269. In the Close Roll for that year 

• "Gleanings," p. 253. t Hardy and Page. Feet of Fines. 

X Sec Red Book of the Exchequer. A nearly complete list of the 
clerks of the accounts at Westminster could easily be made from the 
Calendars of Works Accounts. 


there is a letter inviting Llewellyn of Wales to 
the Feast of the Translation of St. Edward in " the 
new church of Westminster." And we know that 
by this time even the mosaic floor of the pres- 
bytery had been laid down. 

On October 13, 1269, the anniversary of the 
first translation of the Confessor, he was enshrined 
in the marvellous, but still incomplete, feretory of 
gold, silver, and precious stones, beneath the new 
structure which the king, at his own cost, had 
built from the foundation, and in the presence of a 
great concourse of prelates, barons, and commoners. 
On this day the monks first celebrated the mysteries 
within the new building.* 

At the Record Office there are two small accounts 
rendered by Robert de Beverley for works at West- 
minster after the burial of Henry IIL (November 
1272). They refer to the wages of several work- 
men engaged on the tomb of Lord John of Windsor, 
son of Edward L, and include the wages of Master 
Robert de Beverley and his companion. -f In 1272-3 
" Master Robert of Beverley, the king's mason," 
received a payment in respect of a grant of 6d. a 
day, which he was to have for life by command of 
Henry IILJ 

In the Pipe Roll for 2 Edward I. Master Robert's 
account appears for divers works at the palace and 

• Wykes, and "Chronicles of the Reigns of Edwards I. and II." 
Rolls Series. After the death of Henry III. no accounts are known 
which refer to important structural work at the church for two 
generations. t Works, Q.R. 471, 5 and 8. 

t Issue Roll. In the patents for 56 Henry III. I find Master R. 
de Beverley appointed king's carpenter (?) and principal viewer (vhor) 
of works. 



church preparatory to the Coronation of Edward 
in the new church on August 19, 1274. The 
stage, set up in the choir for the king and queen is 
mentioned, also an " alley " made from the Little 
Hall to the church, along which the king and 
queen marched. The choir of the church was 
covered with a temporary wooden floor, and " the 
new tower above the choir" was covered with 
boards. The central lantern, which seems to have 
been temporarily roofed for the occasion, was 
never, as has been said, carried forward to com- 
pletion. That Robert was regularly engaged at 
the Abbey is made plain by an entry in the Book 
of Customs of Abbot Ware. Here, amongst those 
named as receiving a provision of wine from the 
convent, are three of " special grace " — the gold- 
smith. Master R. de Fremlingham (the Abbey 
plumber ?), and Master R. de Beverley. 

In 1274-5 Master Robert, the mason, was 
keeper of the works at the Tower, and in the 
next year we find him mentioned in the Patent 
Rolls (4 Edward L) as being paid for 300 lbs. of wax 
to make an image for the king, and 66s. 8d. for 
making the said image. (Was this a temporary 
wax effigy of Henry HI. ?) In the Close Rolls for 
1275 is an order that he should have I2d. a day 
when staying in London and i6d. when journeying. 
Again we find the king making him a gift of a 
tun of wine. 

In 1276 a Robert de Beverley and his wife 
Cecilia were interested in the transfer of some 
property at Pirford, and as this was a manor be- 
longing to Westminster there can be little doubt 


that this refers to our mason.* In the same year 
Master Robert, called keeper of the king*s works, 
was paid for materials required at the king's Mews 
at Charing ; and several Rolls at the Record Office 
are accounts of works at the palace up to 1278—9, 
guaranteed by Master Robert.-f- 

During these first years of Edward's reign the 
great work in hand was the completion of the 
Tower of London. In 1276 1000 marks was 
issued towards completing the works, and in 1277 
2000 marks. Doubtless much of the enclosure of 
the outer ward with its towers is the work ot 
Master Robert de Beverley. In 1278 he with 
Brother John, of the Order of St. Thomas of Acre, 
masters of the king's works at the Tower, West- 
minster, and the king's Mews, were instructed to 
audit the accounts of Giles de Audenard, the 
king's clerk. In January of this year the king 
issued a mandamus for an inquisition to be held 
"before Giles de Audenard, Master Robert de 
Beverley, and the Aldermen of the City," as to 
whether any damage would arise if a part of the 
city wall near Ludgate was pulled down, and a new 
strong wall was built by Fleet Ditch. This was 
done to provide room for the church and buildings 
of the Blackfriars, and it seems probable that, as 
the king and queen were chief benefactors to 
this church, Robert, the most famous master of 
his tirtie, may have sat at the inquiry as architect 
to the new Friary, and that the beautiful fragment 
of these buildings, found and destroyed in 1900, 
may have been his work. It seems probable, too, 

• F Lewis. Surrey Fines. t Works, Q.R. 472, 6 A, B, E, &c. 



that he may have furnished the plan for Hayles 
Abbey, built by Henry III.'s brother in 127 1. It 
was a copy of Westminster. 

I find our master mentioned again -in 1 279 and 
then no more.* Some works at the church must 
have been going on during the 
whole time of his mastership. 

I have not found Master 
Odo, the carpenter, mentioned 
after 1262—3, when he was 
engaged on works at the palace 
after the fire, and the keeper of 
the Tower was ordered to 
deliver to Odo, the king's 
carpenter, the engine called 
Fig. 67.-Hcad of a Lay " Truyc," to raise timber, t In 
Master, high up in N. 1 273 the name of Master John 
Transept Hurley occurs in the royal ac- 

counts (472, 6 A). He must 
have been a member, as we shall see, of one of the 
greatest families of carpenters of the Middle Ages. 
I trace back a statement as to the completion, in 
1285, of "the work ^^ ^^^ ^^ ^^^ choir extends" 
through Wren and Stow, to Fabian, who may have 
followed a tradition at the church. Possibly some 
works, like glazing and fittings, were not completed 
until this time. Indeed, in 1290, John of Bristol, 
the king's glazier, was paid £6^ for making win- 
dows in the church of Westminster. 

• Close Rolls, Edward I. 

t He must at this lime have put the wood ceiling to the Painted 
Chamber. The Chronicles are clear as to its having been burnt in 
1262. (Sec "Lib. Antiq. Legibus and French Chronicle of London.") 


Widmore (Appendix VL), long ago, quoted a 
record that the total cost of the works up to 1 260—1 
was nearly ^(^30,000. (See also Historic MSS. 
Report, IV.) This sum gives an average of about 
j(^2ooo a year, and we have seen that this was about 
the rate of expenditure for the first eight years. 
In 1254 a precept was issued that 3000 marks 
(>(^2ooo) should be paid yearly from the Exchequer,* 
and in the Issue Roll for the year 1256-7 I find 
exactly this sum, 3000 marks, issued as annual 
grant to the keepers of the work to be paid half- 
yearly. This, then, was the annual rate of expendi- 
ture for the first fifteen years, during which, as has 
been shown, the great body of work was done. 
After that the works may have been stopped for a 
time, and the yearly expenditure was probably less, 
— although in 1 267 and 1 268 it was still large. We 
may perhaps fairly estimate that the whole work of 
Henry III. must have cost about ^(^50,000, inclu- 
ding the shrine and altar. About a year before the 
return of 1 260-1 was made, the King must have 
become frightened — it is an old story — at the costs, 
for he ordered that it should be " distinctly stated 
whether the repair of the King's houses was in- 
cluded in the sum of ^(^28,127." Of course it was 
not ! 

• Widmore. 



Master Richard Crundale : Master Michael of Canterbury : Master 
Richard of Witham : Master Walter of Canterbury : Master Thomas 
of Canterbury : Master William Ramsay, and others. 

Robert de Beverley was succeeded, possibly at 
once, by Richard Crundale or Crundel. From 1288 
^ extensive works were going forward in 

r>. , , the palace, and two MS. Rolls of this 
^ , , time* were guaranteed by Master Richard 
^. , ' Crundale, mason (cementarius), and 
^ ^ Master Robert de Colebrook, carpenter. 

In the second of these, a Master John 
of Ledes, mason, and Master Walter, the painter, 
are mentioned. In 1290 Masters Richard and 
Robert were still engaged on similar work, both 
being in receipt of weekly wages. A Roger 
and Thomas de Crundale are also mentioned, 
as well as Master W. le Wythe and Richard 
de Witham, all masons.-f- I find Master Richard 
first mentioned in 1281, when he served on a 
jury in the City, as also did Hugh de Canter- 
bury, Lathomus (mason), and Walter le Marbler.."}: 
This shows that our master was a citizen of 

Queen Alianor died in 1290, and we know from 

• 467, 16 and 17. 

t 468, 1 and 2. About this time some repairs at Tower Royal in 
the City, to fit it for the queen*s wardrobe, were done by Master 
Radulphus, carpenter. Wardrobe Accounts, British Museum. 

I Dr. Sharpens Letter Book B. 


the full accounts* 
for the building of 
her three tombs and 
the several crosses 
erected to her me- 
mory, that Rich- 
ard Crundale had 
charge of the most 
important cross, and 
also of the exquisite 
tomb in the Abbey. 
From the general 
resemblance of all 
the crosses it seems 
likely that we owe 
the scheme of all of 
them to him, as 
chief king's mason. 
The only authentic 
representations of 
the Queen's Cross 
at Charing,and that 
on a very small 
scale, are on Van 
den Wyngaerde's 
View of London, 
and on the so-called 
Aggas Map. They 
are, however, 

• Hudson Turner, 
"Roxburghc Club" and 
Archahgiay xxix. Original 
in Wardrobe Rolls at the 
Record Office. 

Fig. 68. — The Queen's Cross, Northampton, 

Drawn by Mr. R. Webster 175 


enough to show that it closely resembled the crosses 
at Waltham and Northampton, but it must have 
been much larger, as ^^3^^ was spent on it as 
compared to £()^ for the Waltham Cross. 

In the Crowle Collection there is a drawing of 
Charing Cross, which belonged to Dr. Combes, and 
is referred to by Pennant and engraved by Wilkin- 
son, but its authority seems somewhat doubtful. 
The Cross stood, till 1647, in the triangular space 
where the statue of Charles 11. now is, and formed 
a beautiful outpost of the palace quarter. 

"... They wander about the towne, 
Nor can find the way to Westminster 
Now Charing Cross is downe. 
. . . The Parliament to vote it down 
Conceived it very fitting 
For fear it should fall and kill them all 
In the house as they were silting. 

They were told, God wot, 

It had a plot." • 

The vote was in 1643, but the Cross was not 
entirely destroyed until a few years later. 

The best description I can find of the Cross by 
one whose eyes had seen it is this by John Norden :\ 
" An old weather-beaten monument erected about 
1290 by Edward I. Amongst all the crosses which 
the king caused to be built at the places where 
the queen's body rested, as she was brought from 
Harby beside Lincoln, Charing Cross was the 
most stately, though now defaced by antiquity. 
Here he caused her picture to be shaped in stone 
together with his own and her own arms." 

• Contemporary Poem in Percy Reliques. 
t MS. Harl. 570 {c. 1600). 


The Crundales came, I suppose, from the village 
of that name between Winchelsea and Ashford. In 
the long lists of ordinary masons given in the Rolls 
at this time Kentish names predominate, and a 
Kentish school of masonry seems to have been in 
the ascendant. The church in the king's town of 
Winchelsea is a typical example of early Edwardian 
architecture as practised by R. Crundale, and may 
quite possibly be his work. 

The queen's tomb in the Abbey is of Purbeck 
marble, fatted together in slabs ; it is, in fact, a carved 
chest of marble. The surface of it is now rapidly 
perishing. A cast at the Crystal Palace, taken 
about fifty years ago, is some record of the forms of 
the decoration of one compartment. In the original 
the beautiful shields of arms are suspended to the 
branches of trees — oak, vine, maple, thorn, and one 
with blossoms. Less than a century since some of 
the gilding remained on its mouldings.* A wooden 
tester was the work of Master Thomas de Hokyn- 
tone ; the ironwork was wrought by Master 
Thomas de Leigh ton ; the image was cast by 
Master William Torel ; the basement was painted 
by Master Walter of Durham. 

The accounts for the tombs and crosses show that 
Richard Crundale died about 1294, while Charing 
Cross was still incomplete ; his brother Roger finished 
thework. Its statues were sculptured by Alexander of 
Abingdon, "le imaginator," who also wrought those 
which still exist about the Waltham Cross, which, 
itself, was the work of Nicholas Dyminge de Reyns, 

* In the Cottingham Collection there was a cast of one of the 
panels. It may be this from which the Crystal Palace cast was made up. 

M 177 


assisted by Roger Crundale. This once exquisite 
work of art has been entirely renewed with the ex- 
ception of the images and the lower 
storey. It was first restored in 1833, 
and fifty years later the work was 
re-renewed. Early representations 
of it may be found in Vertue's en- 
graving about 1 730, and in Farmer's 
" History of Waltham," 1740. 
There is a beautiful water-colour 
drawing of it a century old at 
South Kensington. These early 
views show a large portion remain- 
ing of the original stalk which 
once carried the cross proper. This 
rose with almost vertical sides, and 
it shows that the first idea of all 
these structures must have been 
that of a tall churchyard cross rising 
out of a solid basement storey, with 
open tabernacle work containing 
the images and forming the second 
stage, surrounding the lower part 
of the stalk which ran down as a 
solid core behind the statues. The 
Fig. 69. — Diagram composition was thus quite differ- 
liT'T WaSim ent from the sort of model spire 
Cross Waltham Cross has been made 

into. The original idea is still 
obvious at the Geddington Cross, and, by com- 
paring other later crosses at Winchester and else- 
where, and the engraving of a most romantic cross 
once at Gloucester, we may be sure that this was 


the general principle to which they all con- 

The Northampton cross was built by John de 
Bello, or de la Bataille (Battle, Sussex), and John 
Pabeham-f-, at a cost of ^T 134 without the statues, 
which were cut by William de Hibernia, who 
received five marks {£2 6s. 8d.) for each, a sum 
which we may compare with that paid for the 
statues at Westminster mentioned on p. 155. The 
other crosses, now destroyed, were also wrought 
by these masons, whose names we shall meet again 
in the royal accounts. It seems probable that the 
whole of the crosses were built by men of the 
Westminster School, except that at Lincoln, which 
was by Richard de Stow, who was probably the 
same Stow who built the central tower of the 
cathedral from 1 307. This " Queen's Cross " 
stood about a mile out ot the City on the London 

John de la Bataille is possibly the John of Ledes 
mentioned above, as, later, we shall meet a Master 
Thomas de la Bataille of Ledes (in Kent). A John 
de Bataille died in 1 300, leaving shops in Newgate 
Street and houses at St. Albans,| where once stood, 
in the Market Place, an Alianor Cross, which was 
destroyed in 1702. 

• See Parker's " Gloss.," vol. iii. ; " Crosses," Figs. 4, 5, 6. 

t ? Pabenham. 

X Sharpc's « Calendar of Wills.'* 



A second Alianor Cross in London was built in 
Cheapside, at the bottom of Wood Street, by 
,^ , Michael of Canterbury. This cross 

M' h I ^^^ entirely rebuilt in the late mediaeval 
r^ . period, but fragments of it, including 
/ " some of the coats-of-arms, were found 

j/'\ twenty or thirty years ago, and are now 

j^^ in the Guildhall Museum. These frag- 

ments are exactly like similar parts of 
the other crosses. 

In 1 292 the king's new chapel of St. Stephen 
at Westminster was refounded.* Master Michael 
of Canterbury was engaged on this work, concur- 
rently with that of the Cheapside Cross. " Accounts 
of the expenses of the foundation of the Chapel ot 
St. Stephen " are given under the hands of John 
Convers, the clerk, and Master Michael of Canter- 
bury, Cementarius. This is a big bundle of 
accounts, and as a large number of workmen are 
mentioned the work must have been pushed on 
rapidly. *' Master Michael paid for marble-stone," 
is entered in one place. " Michael, Apparitor," 
receiving 3s. 6d. a week, heads the weekly accounts. 
Amongst those named as masons are William de 
Hoo, William le Blound, Thomas de Crundale, 
William de Ledes, and another called Pabenham. A 
John of St. Omer was paid for working three capitals, 
and Alexander was paid for marble. In the accounts 
for the Queen's Crosses we learn that William de 
Hoo wrought the cista (?) for the queen's heart, 
which found a resting-place in the church of the 
Dominicans at Blackfriars. 

* Chronicles Edward I. and Edward 11., Rolls Series. 


Master Robert de Colebrook seems to have been 
the carpenter in charge, for in 1294 a precept was 
issued that Robert de Colebrook, the king's 
carpenter, should take from the forest of Pamber 
(Hants) timber "for the king's chapel at West- 
minster, which the king is now causing to be 
built." * In the above account the name occurs 
of another carpenter — Master John Beck. In this 
Roll a distinction is made between the feast-days 
of the king and of the masons. A similar arrange- 
ment was made when the church was built. 
Board " ^ ^/ moldas'' is mentioned, also ^^malectos^' 
for the " lathomers " ; -f* and in one place there is an 
entry for "timber to make a lodge for Master 
Michael and his masons." The use of the word 
lathomer for mason is of some interest, as it is one of 
the first instances of the use of this word in English 
accounts which I have seen. In France it is found 
two generations before, in Italy still earlier, and is 
ultimately derived from Constantinople. Master 
Michael, in undertaking the work at St. Stephen's 
in 1292, must have succeeded Richard Crundale, 
who died the same year, in the office of king's 
mason. About this same time certain other works 
at the palace were under the charge of William 
le Blound, Cementarius, and Master Robert de 
Waltham, who certified the accounts. 

The undercroft of St. Stephen's Chapel, which 
still exists, although terribly scraped and garnished, 
must in the main be the work of Master Michael. 
The chapel was continued until the great fire of 

• Qose Roll. 

t Is the modem name Latimer derived from Lathomer — mtson ? 



1298 at the palace, after which it does not seem 
to have been resumed until Edward II. took 
up the work and completed the lower chapel.* 
Mackenzie's engravings are sufficient to show 
that the under chapel — St. Mary in the Vaults 
— in its present restored state, represents the forms 
of the old work. As to how much, if any, is truly 
original, covered up as it is with what they call 
"decoration," it is impossible to say. The door, 
with its trellis of carving on a great roll-moulding, 
and the vaulting ribs with their ribbon ornament, 
are most strange in English work, and strangely 

The wonderful tombs, on the north side of the 
presbytery of the church, of Aveline (d. 1273) and 
Edmund Crouchback, her husband (d. 1296), 
resemble one another so closely (some of the 
decorations are identical), that we must suppose 
the former to have been delayed long after the 
death of Aveline. They are both later in style 
than Queen Alianor's tomb of 1292, and they 
closely resemble the tomb of Archbishop Peckham 
at Canterbury. All these three have little statues of 
weepers around the tomb proper, and are amongst 
the earliest instances of this practice in England. 

We may probably assign the two Abbey tombs 
to Master Michael. The pinnacles and little 
statues which adorned the gables were destroyed 
by the erection of the trumpery stagings put up 
for some coronation. " Such havoc," says Gough, 
" does the public use of this venerated pile make 
of its monuments in modern times." Sandford 

* See F. Mackenzie. 


and Dart give valuable plates of the earlier state 
of the tombs. The brackets which rise out of the 

Fig. 70. — Tomb of Aymer dc Valence 

gables bore little statues of angels who carried can- 
dlesticks.* The sculptures and mouldings were all 

* See also the drawing of the Islip Roll, 



decorated with raised gesso work, inlays of coloured 
glass, gilding and painting. 

The tomb of Aymer de Valence is, again, very 
similar to that of Edmund Crouchback, but in its 
sculpture it is the most exquisite of them all ; the 
little figures of weepers are not to be matched in 
England. The tomb of Aveline, I suppose, was 
delayed, and it and that of her husband may be 
dated r. 1300. The tomb of Aymer, on the other 
hand, was, I should think, executed before his 
death in 1326. Burges, indeed, thought that all 
three might be the work of one artist. 

We have above met with the names of Richard 
de Wytham, who in 1290 was working under 
^ Crundale, and also of John Pabenham, 

r>. , , r who was the socius of the master at the 
jjT ^1 ^ Northampton Cross. In 1298 Master 

^ ' Simon de Pabenham, possibly his son, 
and Master de Wytham were reconciled at the 
Guildhall as to certain abusive words which had 
passed between them, and entered into an 
agreement before the Mayor and Aldermen that 
the one guilty of first renewing the quarrel 
should give iocs, to the fabric of London 

Master Simon lived until 1333, in which year 
his will was proved. It shows that he lived near 
Holborn, as he directs his tenement and shops in 
St. Sepulchre's to be sold to pay his debts and 
legacies ; the rest, including other tenements, were 
to remain the property of Alicia, his wife, and of 

• Riley's " Memorials." Masons toere quarrelsome ! 


his daughters Alice and Roesia, The church of 
St. Sepulchre's was to benefit.* 

Richard de Wytham, master mason, was in 1300 
sworn as a " viewer " -f (official mason) over build- 
ings in the City..| In 1301 he made oath before 
the Mayor, with reference to his duties as a mason, 
not to make " purplasters " § (encroachments) and 
the like. It is quite clear that both he and Simon 
de Pabenham were London masons, and we shall 
find that most of the Westminster masons seem to 
have had their shops in the City. 

In 1307 Master Richard de Wytham, mason, 
was " assigned by the Treasurer to superintend and 
direct the works of building, and to be Master at 
the King's Palace and the Tower " at wages of 
7s. a-week.|| 

An account of this date of expenses at the 
palace, including St. Stephen's and La Blanche 
Chambre, begins " Magro Rico de Wighth"^, 
Cem.," then follow a large number of masons-cutters 
(cement, ent), of whom I will only mention 
William de Wightham, Roger of Tonebrigg, and 
Simon de Rammesey.^ Among the layers, (cem. 
cubit.) are named William de Pabenham, and 
Henry de Pabenham, John Brown, Robert de Ledes, 
Ade and Richard de Radewelle, and Simon le 
Mazonsone. Among the marblers (marmor.) are 

• Sharpens "Calendar of Wills," vol. i. p. 400. 
t At York they were called searchers. 

X Papwftrth says that he took up his mastership in this year 
Probably the same event is referred to. See Appendix on '* City Masons.'* 
§ Riley's " Liber Customarum." 
II Britton and Brayley's Palace of Westminster. 
IT British Museum, Add. 30,263. 



Nicholas de Corfe and William de White, who 
may very well be the son of Robert White of 
Corfe, who wrote about the marble of the Abbey 
in 1272. Several men engaged in plastering and 
white-washing are mentioned.* 

In 1 3 10 Master Richard de Wightham, mason 
of London Bridge, was admitted to the freedom of 
the City and sworn to the Commonalty, and paid 
half a mark.-f- 

In accounts of 1311--15.I for works at the 
Palace and the Tower we find the names of William 
and Robert de Shere, Thomas de Weldon, and John 
de Whitewelle, four masons-cutters, cutting free- 
strone (entalliand francapetr.) . Also Richard de 
Wayte and Matthew de Bruton, Maurice deTothill 
(receiving 6d, a day), Henry de Tischemersh, Hugh 
de St. Alban's, and Richard de Chaundeler (5d.) ; 
and John de Radewelle, &c. (3d.). Hugo of Shrews- 
bury, and others, are called wallers (muratori). 
Adam de Corfe (marmorarius) was paid for marble ; 
he is probably the Adam, the marbler, who, in 
1 3 1 2, agreed for a new pavement in St. Paul's. In 
1 33 1 Adam le Marbler died, leaving a tenement in 
East Street, Corfe ; other houses were left to Hugh 
Marbler. In a Roll at the Record Office,§ Maurice 
de TothuU, Richard de Maddelay, William de 
Carlton, and John Radewelle appear as working on 
some " archiboutants," and receiving 6d. a day. 

In 1 315-16 the masons of the City were in- 
structed to elect six paviors, experienced men, to 

• Torchiand et dealbat. Compare our torching of tiles, 

t Sharpens Letter Book D. 

t British Museum Add. 17,361. § Q.R. 468, 20. 



repair the pavements of the City. The election 
was made by Master Michael le Maceoun, Simon 
de Pabenham, Adam le Marberer, Walter de 
Dipenhale, Robert Pavy, Hugh de Tichemers, 
William le Hove, John Child, and others (not 
named), who chose six paviors (who are named). 
In this entry we see the masons of the City acting 
as an organised body, a Guild, and we meet with 
several of our friends and show them to be London 
citizens, and the most important masons at that 
time in London. Robert Pavy lived by Leaden- 
hall ; he died in 1 326, and left a shop to his son 
Walter. From a document of 1 3 1 7 we find that 
Adam, the marbler, lived in Farringdon Ward.* 
Walter, the marbler, in 1326, lived by the 
Thames, close to St. Magnus' Church ; he died 
in 1330. 

In 1300 Robert Osekyn and John Wrytle, car- 
penters, were sworn in as official Carpenters of the 
City. In the accounts of 1307 a large number of 
carpenters appear engaged under Odo of Wylton 
(succeeded by R. Osekyn) at the palace, and at the 
end of the account Master R. Osekyn is called the 
Master Carpenter. Richard Godfrey and John 
Reed were the junctors. John Wrytle, carpenter, 
died in 1305. In the accounts for the years 
1311-15 Peter of Canterbury and John le Rooke 
were the carpenters in charge. 

• Letter Book E. 



In 1322 we meet with the name of Walter of 

Canterbury. From two Rolls of 1324-6* relating 

jur ^ to the king^s works at the Palace and 

TJ7 u f the Tower, it is evident that Master 

^ ^ ^ Walter of Canterbury, Cementarius, was 

Canter- ^1 1 • > / \' ,• 1 

/ the kmg s mason at this time ; he was 

TT^' y assisted by Master Thomas of Canter- 

^ ^ bury, a mason whom we shall meet 

again. Master Thomas de la Bataille, 
Cementarius de Ledes (probably the son of the 
builder of the Northampton Cross) and Reginald 
de Wihthum, Cementarius, are mentioned in this 
account, also Walter Sparrow, who may be an 
ancestor of another mason of this name who worked 
at Westminster Hall at the end of the century. 

In another account of similar works at the same 
time-f- John de Rammeseye, Cementarius, is called 
apparitor. Thomas of Canterbury, Walter de Crun- 
dale, masons, and Wm. of Winchester, carpen- 
ter, are mentioned in this Roll. John de Ramsey 
and his wife Agnes sold premises at Edmonton in 


The lower chapel of St. Stephen's was, Mac- 
kenzie says, finished from 1320 to 1327. We may 
assign its completion to Walter of Canterbury. 

• Record Office, 469, 5-7. 

t 469, 6. 

t Hardy and Price. Fines. 



In a MS. Roll of 1326* we meet with the names 
of Master Thomas of Canterbury, Cemcntarius, 
j^ and William de Hurley, carpenter. This 

rp, / Roll and another (469-10) endorsed 

^ ^ " chapel in the Palace of Westminster, 

/ " year 19," chiefly refers to a " new a/ura** 

j^'\ between the new chapel and the Camera 

j^ ^ depicta. Master Thomas who had charge 

of the work was paid 3s. a week. One 
of the items is for robes — Magrii Thorn, de Cant.' 
Cement', pro roba sua XXs. The clerk to the 
works, Robt. de Pypeshull, also received robes. 
A William de Ramsey, probably a son of John, 
was working as a mason. The next Roll (469, 1 1) is 
endorsed Nova Capella ; it is that which has been 
abstracted by Britton and Brayley and John T. 
Smith, and refers to the beautiful upper chapel. It 
begins — " Monday, 27th day of May, fifth year [of 
Ed. III., />., 1332], Master Thomas of Canterbury 
coming first to Westminster at the beginning of the 
new chapel of St. Stephen, and drawing {intrasura) 
on the moulds," 6s. a week. Ordinary masons re- 
ceived 6d. a day. A Roll of about the same date 
(469, 15) mentions Master Walter de Hurley, 
keeper of carpentry for the king's works. Master 
John de Wynton, plumber, and Thomas Broun, 

I think we can trace from whence Master 
Thomas, the mason, " came to Westminster." In 
1332-3 (6 Ed. III.) Master Thomas of Canterbury 
was paid £6 17s. on account of work at the Guild- 
hall. What were probably allowances for robes 

* 468, 3, calendared 19 Edward I. instead of II. 



were paid — " to Master William de Hurlee, carpen- 
ter, 20S., and to the aforesaid Master Thomas for 
the same work, 20s." Now the Guildhall appears 
to have been enlarged in 1326, when a grant of 
timber and lead was made towards the works of 
the hall and chapel. The work was completed in 
1337** The western crypt has been thought to 
belong to this time, but recent examination has 
convinced me that it is contemporaneous with the 
hall above, and the eastern crypt, from which it 
differs only because of its lesser importance. 

The upper chapel of St. Stephen's was perhaps 
the crest of the Gothic movement in England, a 
work imaginative to fantasy, yet as a whole simple, 
large, noble. From a wall-bench rose semi-pillars 
of marble forming the bays. The lower stage was 
a beautiful wall-arcade containing elaborate paint- 
ings of angels ; above was a range of tall windows. 
The ceiling was almost certainly of wood, possibly 
something like that of Canterbury Chapter House. 
The work throughout was painted in the fairest 
colours, purfled with gilt gesso work, called 
" prints " in the accounts. Even the black polished 
marble was spotted over with gilded discs of this 
work, and other portions of the stone-work were 
enriched with inlays of coloured glass laid over 
foils. Both these methods of decoration are to 
be found in the Ste. Chapelle, which certainly 
also influenced the general design of our own 

This great work of Master Thomas has been 
very fully illustrated by Carter, J. T. Smith, and 

• Price. ''History of Guildhall." 


F. Mackenzie.* Mackenzie's suggestion of an 
upper storey is quite inadmissible. What he makes 
into a gallery was clearly the parapet gutter and 
springing for the roof above the main cornice.-t" The 
view of the chapel in Van den Wyngaerde's drawing 
is conclusive as to its having had a flattish roof and no 
additional storey. This drawing, made about 1560, 
carries us right back to the time of the suppression 
of the chapel, which did not take place till the reign 
of Edward VI. It was then handed over to the 
House of Commons, probably without any large 
injury to the structure, for Camden, in some notes on 
the heraldry, was able to record the arms of England, 
which " bordured the windows " (MS. Lands. 874). 
In the British Museum several carved stones and 
some fragments of the paintings are preserved ; 
there are also some casts in the Architectural 
Museum. The former show what the brilliancy ot 
the colouring must have been. In 1333 Thomas 
Bernak of Lambeth supplied worked stones for the 
windows " by agreement with the Master." These 
windows seem to have been in the Canterbury style, 
and Master Thomas in agreeing for them doubtless 
supplied some of the " moulds " which he had drawn 
out. The remarkable cresting of the wall-arcade 
at St. Stephen's bears a close resemblance to 
similar details at Canterbury. These Canterbury 
masters had both probably been trained at the 

• Sec Carter's "Specimens," the Vetusta Mon., F. Mackenzie, 
J. T. Smith's "Westminster." See also some drawings in Archer 
Collection in British Museum. 

t See also Britton and Brayley's ** Palace." 



The name of Richard Lynne appears amongst the 
setters. The will of Richard de Lynne, mason, of 
St. Andrew's, Castle Baynard, was proved in 1341.* 
A Roll of 1337-9 shows that Master William 
Hurle was carpenter. Master Walter Bury, smith. 
Master Richard Canterbury and Thomas Atte- 
Wyche, plumbers. Richard Canon, of Corfe, was 
paid for marble, and William Canon worked at the 
chapel. We know all about these Canons of 
Corfe from the Exeter Cathedral accounts. In 
1332 William Canon was paid for a large quantity 
of wrought marble supplied for the cathedral by 
his father and himself. In 1352 Master Edward 
Canon, master stone-cutter, working on the stalls 
of St. Stephen's Chapel, was paid the large wage 
of IS. 6d. a day. 

Our mason, Thomas of Canterbury, in 1335, 
became guardian for the children of John de Wyn- 
cestre, whose will was proved in this ycar.-f From 
the Roll 469, 15, we find that this Master John de 
Wynton was, from 1 3 3 1 , working with Thomas of 
Canterbury at the palace, where he was in charge 
of the plumbing. 

We saw that a John Ramsey was working at 
the Palace in 1322, and a William Ramsay in 
W'lr ^3^6' T'he latter was master mason 

P of the new Chapter House at St. PauVs, 

^. , ^'* in which he showed himself one of the 
j^ ^ most advanced masters of the time. In 

1332 the Dean and Chapter gave up 
their garden on the south side of the Nave to 

• Sharpens "Calendar of Wills." f /^/V. 



build a Chapter House and Cloister.* Now in this 
very year it was ordered by the Mayor and Alder- 
men of London that " Master William de Ramseye, 
mason, who is master of the new works at St. 
Paul's, and is especially and assiduously giving his 
whole attention to the business of the said church, 
shall not be placed on juries or inquests.-f 

A portion of this work, uncovered some years 
ago, is quite sufficient to show how delicate it was, 
and we can well understand why Ramsey should 
have been invited to complete St. Stephen's Chapel, 
which so much resembles it in style. J 

In 1336 a Commission was appointed to inquire 
into the state of repair of the Tower.§ Amongst 
the names of the chief London carpenters, masons, 
plumbers, glaziers, &c., who served on it, appear 
those of the masons Peter de Tytemerssche, 
William de Rameseye, Reginald de Wytham, and 
Robert de Dippenhall. 

In 1337 "William de Ramesey, king's mason," 
was appointed chief mason at the Tower, and chief 
surveyor of all the king's works, as well in those 
pertaining to the said office of mason as in those 
in all castles on this side Trent, and also in all 
things in the Tower. Master William de Hurle 
was appointed in like manner to the office of 
carpenter, and Master Walter le Fevre to the 
office of smith. A week or two later, when these 
appointments were confirmed, each in turn is called 
" chief surveyor " for his own art, and each was to 

• Calendar St. Paul's Doc. t Riley's " Memorials." 

X His name and that of Agnes, his daughter, appear on a deed at 
St. Paul's (Calendar). § Baylcy*s "Tower." Appendix I. 

N 193 


" receive in his office a robe as befits his estate," 
yearly, and izd. daily for his wages from the 

In the next year a Westminster RoU,*!^ endorsed 
" Capella de Westmoii, anno. XL [Ed. III.], shows 
that the work at St. Stephen's was under the ordina- 
tion of "Master William de Ramsey,Master Cemen- 
tarius to the king." In 1 344 Nicholas de Abyngdon, 
Cementarius, and John de Ramsey, Cementarius, are 
called apparitors for the work at St. Stephen's and re- 
ceived 3 J. 6d. weekly [470, 13]. J About five years 
laterjohn Ramsey or "Johnle Mason" died. Hiswill, 
proved in 1349, devises to his wife Juliana and his 
brother Nicholas some tenements in St. Michael's, 
Cornhill ; Master William Ramsey, his brother, 
is mentioned. § Nicholas de Rameseye supplied 
three mouncells of plaster of Paris for repairs at 
the palace in 1 348, and thus appears to have been 
a plasterer. John Rameseye, marbler, mentioned in 
1376, was probably of the same family.|| 

In 1 344 commissions were issued to William de 
Hurle, king's carpenter, and William de Rameseye, 
the king's mason, to select workmen for Windsor.^ 

The first existing list of the Common Council 
in London is of the year 1347. In it Aldersgate 

• Calendar of Patent Rolls, lo Edward III. 

t Record Office, 470, 2. 

X William Wayte and Robert Winchester were working at the 
chapel at this time. 

§ Sharpe's " Calendar of Wills." 

II Riley's " Memorials." 

H Rymer, Feb. 26. A vault to a gate-tower at Wipdsor with lions' 
heads in the bosses is so like that to the so-called Bloody Tower at 
London that both must be the work of one mason, possibly Ramsey. 


Ward is represented by William de Rameseye.* 
Mr. Common Councillor Ramsey is the only 
mason I know who attained official dignity. In 
1348 he bought property at Enfield.-t 

Our mason was, in the year 1332, a party to a 
city romance. Robert Huberd, aged 14, a ward 
of the city, and well-off, was by him and others 
forcibly removed from the charge of his proper 
guardian. On November 20 Master William de 
Ramsey, junior, Christina, his wife, Thomas de 
Chacombe, Master William de Ramsey, senior, 
and Nicholas de Ramsey went to the house of 
John Spray, the guardian. Without Aldersgate, and 
abducted the said Robert, and caused him to be 
married to Agnes, a daughter of William de 
Ramsey, junior, in contempt of the mayor. 
William, Christina, and Thomas were " attached,'* 
but the others were not found. And the 
said William, Christina, and Thomas pleaded not 
guilty, and, as to the marriage, they put them- 
selves on the county. Inasmuch as the marriage 
could not be annulled it was adjudged that Robert 
should choose whether he would remain with 
William de Ramsey, whose daughter he had 
married, or return to John Spray. He thereupon 
chose to remain with the said William and his 
wife, and John Spray prayed to be discharged from 
the guardianship. But William de Ramsey pro- 
duced sureties for the proper performance of his 
duties as guardian. This high-handed proceeding 
did not, as we have seen, interfere with our mason's 
distinguished career. And this bold way of dealing 

• Riley's '* Memorials." t Hardy and Page. Fines, 



with affairs seems to fill out our conception of what 
a mediaeval craftsman should be, 

William de Ramsey was, in 1350, still "master 
of masons' work at the king's chapel," William 
1^ Hurle was the master carpenter, and 

TJ7'tt' William Herland, another of the car- 

Tj J J penters, received 3/, bd. weekly wages.* 
Tj^'ll' In the accounts for St. Stephen's in 

Ti 1 J n ?2, Master William Hurle, carpenter, 
j^. , ' IS seen to have been working on the 
p ^ stalls at IS. a day. Master William 

Herland, carpenter, accounts in this 
^ ' year for ^^ 10 spent in making the stalls. 
He is called carpenter to the king, and guarantees 
the accounts ; he was receiving 41. Sd. weekly. 
Master Hurle 41., and Richard Walton, foreman, 
3 J. 6d.f 

Both the chief carpenters were engaged also on the 
large building works carried on at Windsor under 
Edward III. In 1344 William Hurle, the king's 
master carpenter, and William Ramsey, the king's 
master mason, were commissioned to procure 
workmen for Windsor.^ Continuing the work 
then begun, William de Hurle and William de 
Hurland, the carpenters, were in 1350 in charge, 
William Sponlee being master of the stone hewers. 
In 1358-9 Geoffrey de Carlton was keeper of all 
the masons' work at wages of 6d. a day.§ Geoffrey 

• Record Office, 470, 18, 19. 

t Rolls, 471, 5 and 6, largely printed by J. T. Smith. J Rymer. 

§ Tighe and Davis. In 1359 William Holland, John Berholte, 
and John Havering were commissioned to obtain carpenters for work at 


may be a son of William Carlton who was working 
at Westminster forty-five years before. In 1378 
Geoflrey de Carlton was confirmed in the office of 
Cementarius to the king at Windsor Castle, with 
6d. daily wages and 20J. yearly for robe and shoes. 
Carlton was mason at Windsor while Wykeham 
acted as " surveyor " for the king. Wykeham 
had been appointed, with power to press masons, 
in 1356. Chaucer became clerk to the works 
with similar powers in 1389. They both repre- 
sented the clerkly side of the building. Wykeham 
was no more the architect at Windsor than he 
was at Winchester, where Master Wynford was 
master mason. 

Sandwich ; and similar orders were given to three masons. (Rymer.) 
John Havering is mentioned again in 1371 ; also John Massingham and 
Thomas Tilney. The latter was granted a yearly pension for good 
services rendered to the king. (Issue Roll.) 





Fire and Rebuilding : New Cloister : More King's Masons : The Nave. 

It is likely that Henry IIL never contemplated 
building more than the Chevet, the Choir, the 
p. , Chapter House, and the Belfry. The 

r> 7 ij nave and the monastic buildings of the 
. " " old church, the former not yet a century 
^* old, were to remain as they were. The 

king, therefore, saw his work practically complete 
in all its beauty. The great bulk of the eastern 
work rose high above the nave and Lady Chapel ; 
the stone work was fair and sharp ; the lead roof 
shone like silver; the window-glass gleamed against 
the light like nets of sea-water or as if mixed of fire 
and sky ; the royal doors, with their noble statues of 
the Apostles, were daintily illuminated in colour and 
gold. The greater part of the cloister was of sturdy 
Norman work, wood-roofed. The dormitory over 
its cellars and the refectory were long ranges of 
early Norman building, while the infirmary, which 
backed close upon some of the palace buildings, 
was of elegant transitional Norman. To complete 
the picture we are to think of our Abbey as set 
about with its farm buildings, granaries and mills, 
and its orchards and fields. So it stood for a few 
years only ; and then an accident necessitated large 
re-building works — works which form an interme- 
diate chapter in the history of the Abbey buildings. 


In 1 298 there was a great fire at the palace, which 
is mentioned by several chroniclers ; only one of 
these, however, in a MS. Chronicle of St. Mary of 
Southwark in the British Museum,* gives facts 
which, I believe, have not been made use of by 
any historian of the Abbey. They are to the 
effect that on March 29, 1298, was burnt the 
little hall of the king at Westminster, also the 
monk's dormitory, refectory, infirmary, cellars, 
and the abbot's hall. These are exactly the 
parts of the Abbey buildings which were altered 
and rebuilt during the course of the fourteenth 

Directly after this fire a still worse thing befell 
the monastery, for it became involved in the 
robbery of the king's treasury, and several of the 
monks were imprisoned for two years. Matthew of 
Westminster writes: "Edward, King of England, 
had his Treasury plundered by a single robber in 
England, for which ten monks of Westminster 
were unjustly imprisoned." -f- 

The patching up of the portions burnt must 
have been at once done in a temporary way, but 
the more substantial re-building consequent on the 
fire was delayed for a generation, and then pro- 
ceeded slowly. The dormitory would be first 
repaired, and here we find some pretty two-light 
Edwardian windows, of about 1300 taking the 
place of the old Norman lights. (Fig. 71.) Below 
in the ranges of cellars there are also some doorways 

• Faust. A. 8. 

t The author who goes by the name of Matthew of W., I should say 
here and elsewhere. 



of this time. In 1307 "divers houses within the 

Abbey were roofed and repaired " by Edward II.* 
The fire must have burst out from the 
dormitory and have injured the 
west window of the Chapter 
House which faces it. When 
Scott renewed the Chapter House 
he found that the west window 
; ; ; had originally been of four lights 
j:^ like the others, but more recently 
had been of five lights. " It was 
clear, from fragments of the 
tracery found, that the window 
had been renewed by Abbot 
Byrcheston when he rebuilt the 
bays of the cloister opposite to 

mw^ w^/ ^ f % f^wM^ the Chapter House entrance, and 
in the same style with them. He, 

"^"^r I'^-^^l^'^'^'' therefore, altered it from a four- 

Window m Norman r ^> y • i »> / \ 

opening ^o a five-hght Window (c. 1 350). 

Scott, in his restoration, made 

the " style" of the west window like to the others. 

The west door of the infirmary chapel is also 
of the work erected about 1350. 

It has been said above that the earlier form of 
the infirmary would have been a hall in continua- 
tion of its chapel. Burnt in 1298, it was not 
rebuilt in the old form, but as a series of small 
lodgings surrounding a court, the present Little 
Cloister. This was the work of Litlington, whose 
arms are on the tower to the right of the entry 
to the court. The refectory had its upper stage 

• Braylcy and Britton. 



rebuilt as at present, and a new timber roof rested 
upon the fine corbels which jut out between the 
windows.* The abbot*s hall was also rebuilt, and 
the cloister was completed by Litlington, whose 
monogram and arms appear on the bosses of the 
southern range of vaults. Litlington also built or 
rebuilt the kitchen and houses for the Sacrist and 
Almoner, the Great Malt House, the Mill, iccf 

The work of the new cloister was resumed 
about 1 340. The portion in front of the Chapter 
^ House and completing the eastern walk 

P/ ' . is evidently work of this time. It is 

known that Abbot Byrcheston (1344- 
1349) was buried in front of the entrance to the 
Chapter House, and the usual rule as to burials 
would show that these bays of the cloister were 
built in his day. In 1 345 an account acknowledges 
120 marks received from the Abbot for making 
a cloister. No names of masons appear in the 
extract given in " Gleanings," but an earlier account 
of 1342 shows that Walter le Bole, mason, was 
paid ^20 for repairs and making of four windows 
and one great pillar by special agreement ; also 60s. 
wages for making parapets ; dress, boots, gloves 
and food being found. It is evident that Bole was 
a master, and he may have been responsible for 
the pattern of the new portion of the cloister, 
which was not a royal work. The work belongs 
to the Canterbury School of design, which at this 

♦ These corbels do not space at the same intervals as the windows. 
The windows seem to occupy the positions of the Norman openings. 
t See Sporley MS. and Widmore« 



time was in the ascendant, and it is the last example 
at the Abbey of the earlier and more romantic 
fashion of mason craft. In 1349 the will of 
Walter Bole, mason, was proved at Guildhall ; 
from it we learn that he lived in St. Andrew's, 
Castle Baynard.* This was the year of the Black 
Death, when Abbot Byrcheston and twenty-six 
monks of Westminster died of the plague. When 
work was resumed in the south cloister a great 
gulf was overpast. On one side was the formative 
age of the mediaeval idea, on the other was the age 
of decay. In art at least " the prosperity which 
went before was never recurred." -f 

In 1 35 1— 2 the south cloister was in progress. 
It is called " the work of the Prior in the cloister." 
Only three or four masons were employed at a 
time at is. 8d. and 2s. a week. The master was 
paid 26s. 8d. over his wages, and for his dress and 
shoes 1 6s. 4d. The name of this master is not 
given in the extracts published in " Gleanings," 
but the fee of two marks was the regular one for 
master masons at this time at Exeter Cathedral 
and other places. In 1354 the same fee was paid 
to the head mason, " but nothing for his dress this 
year because he refused to take it on account 
of delay in its delivery " (I don't want any of your 
robes !) 

The foundations of the south walk were com- 
pleted by a man and a boy during forty weeks of 
1356. Most of the work up to this time must have 
been in the preparation of the masonry, so that on 
the removal of the Norman work it could be set 

• Sharpens " Wills." t Capgravc'e " Chronicle." 



up quickly. In 1357-8 one of the doorways in 
the south walk was completed and the vaulting was 
being erected — one " bedder " being hired to hasten 
the work. 

In 1366 three masons were employed at 2s. 
a week each, with " livery " of bread and ale. 
The receipts and expenses for this year were 
>^45 4s. lod., and a note on the account reads 
" and so they were equal, the cloister being 

The king's master mason, who succeeded 
Master William Ramsey (see p. 196) seems to 
j^ have been John Box, who was working 

j^' , at the palace by task-work in 1353. In 

j^^^ 1355 (28 Ed. III.) Master John Box, 

Cementarius, was receiving I2d. a day, 
and one Thomas of Gloucester " apparitor " 6d. a 
day, on the king's works at the Tower, Master 
William Herland being the carpenter.* In other 
Rolls of this and the following year concerned with 
the palace and St. Stephen's Chapel Thomas of 
Gloucester appears alone,*f and he must have been 
one of the best-known masons in London, for in 
1356 certain articles touching the conduct of the 
craft being under consideration, the Mayor caused 
" the good folk of the trade " to be summoned 
before him that he might best know how the trade 
should be ordered : whereupon they selected twelve 
of their number to represent them, viz. : 

♦ Exchequer Accounts, 417, 11. f 471, 9, 15, 16. 



Walter de Sallyngc. Richard Joyce. 

Richard de Sallynge. Symon dc Bartone. 

Thomas de Bredone. John de Estone. 

John de Tyryngton. John Wylot. 

Thos. de Gloucester. Thomas Hardegray. 

Henry de Yevele. Richard de Comwayllc. 
On behalf of the Mason- On behalf of the 

hewers or Freestone-masons, Layers or Setters. 

They agreed on eight articles, the first being 
that " Every man of the Trade " might do either 
branch of the work " if he be perfectly skilful and 
knowing in the same."* In 1358-9 Thomas of 
Gloucester was still working at the palace, and is 
called " cementarius and apparitor working and 
ordering mason*s work." He was, I have no 
doubt, the king's chief mason of the time. William 
Herland was the carpenter.-f- 

In 1 362 Cardinal Langham gave ^40 towards the 
building of the body of the church.:}: And a letter 
Tfu> N ^^ preserved of the time of his successor. 
Abbot Litlington (i 362-1 386), which 
shows that a part of the ancient church by the 
cloister had been pulled down — probably part of 
the south aisle — when the cloister was being 

In 1388 the completion of the nave was under- 
taken by Richard II. An account of his eleventh 
year entitled " The New Work of the Church of 
Westminster" speaks of men being employed in 
"breaking down the walls of the old church.'* A fee 
is entered for Master Yevele, chief mason, iocs, per 

• Riley's ** Memorials." 

t Exchequer Accounts, 472, 4. X Stow. 



annum, and for his dress and furs, 1 5s." Another fee 
of 13s. 4d. was paid to Robert Kentbury,* and 
Thomas Padington received los, for a tunic. Six 
years later Henry Yevele was still chief mason, and 
he probably remained in charge of the work until 
close to the time of his death in 1400. We may 
look on him as the " designer " of the nave and of 
even the lower part of the West Front of which 
the porch so closely resembles the porches of 
Westminster Hall and Winchester Cathedral. 
Yevele was the great master of the time, and during 
a long life he did so much that it will be well to 
give a separate account of him. The work was 
carried forward slowly by ten or twelve masons for 
several years. Pillars of marble for the nave- 
arcade were wrought at Corfe at a cost of ^40 each. 
A new lodge for the masons was built in I395.'t* 
Some of the bays of the nave must have been 
finished by Richard II., for the window to the 
left of the western door into the cloister had in 
the glazing his badge of the white hart. A porch 
was also built by Richard II. in front of the North 
Transept, and this would also have been Yevele's 
work. The exterior of this fine porch is shown in 
Hollar's engraving, and its plan is in " Dugdale." 
(See our Fig. 73.) 

Richard II. by will (1399) left certain jewels to 
the "Fabric of the Nave of St. Peter, Westminster, 
by us begun.":}: 

In the first year of Henry IV. Master William of 

• He was under-master to Yevele, I suppose. In 1381 Robert 
Kentbury held a croft at Westminster. Bentley's Cartulary, 
t Scott's "Gleanings." % Nichols' " Royal Wills." 



Colchester was chief mason of the works of the 
nave of the Abbey, receiving a fee of iocs, a year 
and his dress and furs. In 141 3 (i Hen. V.) 
William was still master mason of the new nave, 
" ordering and surveying the work " for a yearly 
fee of j^io. John Russe and Richard Knappewere 
paid for twenty-four small pieces of marble.* 

This year Henry V. appointed (Sir) Richard 
Whittington to receive 1000 marks a year, granted 
by the king, for the completion of the church ; that 
is, to act as keeper of the works ; and a patent 
was issued for pressing workmen. -f- 

In 141 5 John (?) Colchester, mason, was ordered 
to press workmen for the king's work at Harfleur, 
and Simon Lewys and John Benet of Maidstone, 
masons, were in this same year ordered to press 
100 masons for Henry V.'s expedition. Benet is 
again mentioned in 1418..I 

In 141 6, on the recommendation of the king, 
William Colchester became master mason at York 
Cathedral, and I cannot say what immediately 
happened at Westminster, although we know who 
was king's mason about a dozen years after Col- 
chester went to York, from an account of the 
building of St. Stephen's, Walbrook. This church 
was begun on May 11, 1429, and hallowed on 
St. Erkenwald's Day, 1439, Robert Chichcle, 
grocer and alderman, brother to the Archbishop, 
being the chief benefactor. Eight memorial stones 
were laid by important people : one by Master 
Thomas Mapilton, "the king's mason, then being 

♦ "Gleanings," p. 214. 

t Hist. MSB. Report, vol. iv. J Rymcr. 



master mason of the said church work." * Master 
Thomas Mapilton had been master of the works 
at Durham Cathedral until 141 6, the year Colchester 
went to York. Possibly the latter was sent away 
to make room for Mapilton. At York, Colchester 
was looked on as an interloper, and a letter is in 
existence which explains that " some masons, being 
moved by envy, conspired against Master William 
Colchester, appointed by the king's patent, and 
attacked him so that his life is in danger.^-f- 

In 1422 Henry V. died, and we know from an 
Issue Roll that ^(^23 6s. 8d. was paid on account ot 
his tomb in the Abbey in the same year. To 
Mapilton we probably owe the mason craft ot 
this tomb, and the beautiful chantry which sur- 
mounts it. 

From an almost contemporary Life,:J: it appears 
that the king had seen to the devising of his tomb 
before his death. " His body was embalmed and 
cired, and laid on a royal carriage, and an image 
like to him was laid upon the corpse, open ; and 
with divers banners, and horses covered with the 
arms of England and France, St. Edward and St. 
Edmund,§ and a great multitude of torches . . . 
and brought with great solemnity to Westminster 
and worshipfully buried ; and after was laid on his 

♦ " Transactions," London and MtadUsex Archaological Society y vol. v. 
Thomas may have been the son of John Mapylton, marbler, of St. 
Dunstan's, Fleet Street, who died 1407. Sharpens " Wills." 

t Rayne, York Fabric Rolls. 

X MS. Claud. A. 8. See also the King's Will. 

§ Similar arms can still be traced painted on the shields over the 
altar of the chapel, and the images of the altar piece are the patrons of 
England and France with Saints Edward and Edmund. 



tomb a royal image, like to himself, of silver 
and gilt, which was made at the cost of Queen 
Katharine. . . . He ordained by his life the place 
of his sepulchre, where he is now buried, and every 
day iii masses perpetually to be sungen in a fair 
chapel over his sepulchre." His will also provides 
that the chantry should be a raised relic chapel with 
two stairs, one for ascent, the other for descent. 
The form of this chantry was, I believe, suggested 
by the relic stage and its staircases in the Ste. 
Chapelle, Paris, which the king would have known 
so well.* 

In a bill of 1422 we appear to trace the very 
arms made for the funeral. Thomas Daunt was 
paid for these " scutcheons,'' and 33s. 4d. for a 
helmet and crest for the king, possibly those which 
still exist.-f- 

In 143 1 the iron grate was made for the 

Possibly some of the tombs in the Abbey church, 
also, like those of Lord Bourchier (1431) and 
Phillipa of York (143 1), may have been erected 
under Mapilton's influence. 

We know for certain who was king's mason 
working at the Abbey about 1448. 

At a commission held to determine the place of 
burial of Henry VI. evidence was given that about 
twelve years before his death Henry VI. entered 
St. Edward's Chapel, and, having selected a place, 
^' commanded a mason to be called to mark out the 

♦ There is not the least doubt that the effigy was silver. It is 
mentioned again in the Suppression Inventory. See Stanley's 
" Memorials " also. t Rymer. 



ground, whereupon, by the advice of the Abbot, 
was called Thirsk, that time being master mason 
in the making of the chapel of Henry V, [not yet 
finished, or a mistake], which mason incontinently 
came, and with his ' pykkes ' marked out the said 
sepulture, Thomas Fifelde of London, marbler, 
[aged] 66, proved that messengers came to the house 
of John Essex, head marbler in S. Paul's Churchyard 
(with whom Thomas was apprentice) and desired 
him to go to the king to make a tomb for him. 
Whereupon John Essex sent for Thomas Stephens, 
coppersmith, of Gutter Lane, and they went forth- 
with to Westminster. On the next day Fifelde 
heard his master and Thomas Stephens, sitting at 
supper in the house of John Essex, say that they 
had bargained with the king for his tomb and had 
received 40J. on account, of which they gave one 
groat to deponent. But nothing was done because 
of the great troubles which followed/' * 

Of John Essex, marbler, and Thomas Stephens, 
coppersmith, we hear again as having, together with 
William Austin, founder, made the tomb of the 
Earl of Warwick. -f- 

We may, perhaps, assign the beautiful screen 
between the altar and the Confessor's chapel at 
Westminster to Thirske. The Confessor's chapel 
seems to have been rearranged in consequence of 
the building of Henry V.'s chantry, and the 
evidence of style points to the work belonging to 
the reigns of Henry VL or Edward IV. 

Work at the nave was continued by Abbot 

• Sunley*8 '• Memorials." 

t See agreements in Dugdale's " Warwick.'* 

o 209 


Millyng, who is called " master of the works," 
in 1469, when he acknowledged a debt of ^(^37 to 
the plumber (Hist. MSS. Comm. iv. p. 179). 
Abbot Estney (1474-98) contributed largely to 
the completion of the west end of the church, and 
the great west window is his work."* In 1484 

Fig. 72. — Islip*s screen. West end of Nave Aisle 

William Tumour is said to have been master mason 
at the church,*!- but this I have not been able to 

Abbot Islip, 1500—33, completed the west front 
except the towers and the gable ; the latter remained 
weather-boarded when Wren reported, and the 
former were not undertaken until 1740. 

Some stone screens which were in the western bays 
beneath the towers bore Islip's rebus ; they were 
destroyed early in the last century.:}: (Fig. 72.) 

* Keepe. f Papworth, in Diet. Archr. s.v., Westminster. 

t See Gentkmai^s Magazine^ 1808. 



The Abbot's own chapel was built during his life, and 
is shown complete in the drawings of his funeral.* 
In the description it is said that the mourners, " in 
a place over the chapel of the defunct, found pre- 
pared spiced bread, suckett, marmylite, and wine. 
In the mean season they of the church did bury 
the defunct in the chapel of his building. And 
the four banners of Our Lady, St. Peter, St. Edward, 
and St. Catherine were affixed to irons." 

• These drawings have now been published by the Society ot 



Master Henry Yevele, King's Mason, and Master Hugh Herland, 
King's Carpenter* 

In the list of the mason's jury for the year 1356 
we have seen the name of Henry de Yevele, mason- 
^ hewer. He was to become the great 

j^ representative mason of the second half 

^^^y of the fourteenth century. A document 
of the year 1362 names Mistre William 
Herland, chief carpenter, Henry Yevele, deviser of 
masonry, and William of Wikham, clerk.* In 
1365 Yevele was master mason of the king's works 
at the Palace and the Tower, at a wage of is. 
a day. William of Winchester, Cementarius and 
apparitor, received 6d. ; Master William Herland, 
master carpenter, is. ; and Hugh Herland, apparitor 
of carpenter's work, 6d.-t- In 1375 William Her- 
land, the carpenter, died. From his will it 
appears that he lived in the parish of St. Peter's, 
Paul's Wharf, and was buried in the parish 

In 1 37 1 Henry Yevele, Cementarius, was "sent 
to various parts to retain divers masons to be sent 
in the retinue of the king (Edward III.) beyond 
seas," and money was delivered to him for the 
wages of twenty-five masons receiving each 6d. 
a day. William de Wynford, Cementarius, was 

♦ 472, 10, and 8. t 472, 16. 

I Sharpe. " Calendar of London Wills." 



sent on a similar mission.* This Wynford was 
to become the architect to William of Wyke- 
ham at Winchester Cathedral and College. He is 
mentioned in the bishop's will, and his portrait is 
painted on the glass of the east window of the 
College chapel, together with the carpenter and 
glazier of the same. He was rewarded by the king 
by a gift of property at Windsor, and had probably 
been the king's mason there while Wykeham was 
surveyor or clerk to the works. 

In 1377 (i Rich. II.) Yevele was directed by 
patent to take masons and put them on the king's 
works at the Palace and the Tower, with power to 
imprison the disobedient. In another patent of 
1 378 Yevele is called " Director of the Works in 
the Art of Masonry at the Palace and the Tower 
in the late reign," and a grant for life of i2d, 
daily, made in 1370, is confirmed. In this same 
year he and Master William Wynford were directed 
to take masons and set them to work at South- 
ampton. In 1 38 1 Yevele was ordered to collect 
masons for service in Brittany. The year before a 
proposal was made to build a tower on each side of 
the Thames so that a chain, stretched from one to 
the other, might protect shipping. William Wal- 
worth, John Northampton, Nicholas Twyford, 
goldsmith — all important city people — and Henry 
Yevele formed a committee for seeing to this work.-f- 
About the same time Yevele designed the south 
aisle of St. Dunstan's in Thames Street. In an 
agreement of 1381 between Lord Cobham and 

♦ Devon's Issue Roll. Was he the same as the William of Win- 
chester above ? t Riley's " Memorials." 



Nicholas Typerton, mason, preserved in the British 
Museum, Typerton undertakes to build the aisle 
"selon la devyse de Master Henry Ivelighe," 
Here ^we have an instance of one famous mason 
directing the work carried out by another, Yevele 
was also employed by Lord Cobham to overlook 
the work of Thomas Wrewk and William Sharn- 
dale at Cowling Castle.* 

In 1383 Yevele was one of several surveyors for 
making a bridge at Stroud. In the same year 
Master William de Wynford, one of the masons 
of the late king (Edward III.), was granted j^io 
yearly out of the fee-farm of Guildford in lieu ot 
a patent, 46 Ed. III., allowing him the like amount 
out of the estate of John Brocas, knight. A grant 
was also made to Hugh Herland, carpenter, " verg- 
ing on old age,'' of 1 2d. daily, and a robe yearly. 
At this time Hugh Herland was living on the 
south side of Thames Street in the city. 

In 1384 I find that Yevele is still called a stone- 
mason, and in the same year a ratification was 
made of his estate in two shops in St. Mary Out- 
wich parish, late of John Totenham, carpenter, in 
consideration of great services to the king. John 
Totenham had been the city carpenter twenty 
years before. (See Appendix.) 

In 1388, as we have seen, and for many years 
after, our master mason was directing the works at 
the new nave of Westminster Abbey church, 
which he probably designed. 

In 1389 he was *' handsomely rewarded" and 

* I. G. Nichols, London and Middlesex Archaologtcal Transactions^ 
vol. ii. 1865. 


promised a yearly robe of esquire's degree, and in 
1390 he was exempted from being put on juries, 
&c., in consideration of his being king's mason 
and surveyor of the works within the Palace of 
Westminster, &c., and on account of his great age.* 
If he was now seventy he must 
have been born in 1320 and have 
been thirty-six when we first 
found him holding a distin- 
guished place amongst London 

In 1390 Yevele's old pension 
of a IS. a day was "cancelled 
because the king granted him / = 
the manors of Fremworth and 
Vannes, in Kent." 

Richard's queen, Anne of 
Bohemia, died in 1394, and the Fig. 73.— Porch added 
king at once set about making '^^'JTT'H'^ 

, ° , , . , 1 r 1 1 ^bly by Yevele. After 

the splendid tomb for her and ^^^^^ 
himself which stands on the 
south side of the Confessor's chapel. Two agree- 
ments at the Record Office were published by 
Rymer. In the first, Henry Yevele and Stephen 
Lote undertake to make a tomb of marble like the 
tomb of Edward III. (which it adjoins), and 
according to a model bearing the seal of the 
Treasurer of England, for jC^S^j ^^^ £^^ addi- 
tional if it gave satisfaction. The other agreement 
was with Nicholas Broker and Godfrey Prest in 
regard to the bronze images for the same tomb. 
From the resemblance of this tomb to that of 

* Cal. Patent Rolls. 



Edward III. (d. 1377) there can be little doubt 
that the marble work of that also was the work of 
Yevele who, as we have seen, was master mason to 
Edward III. The tomb of Archbishop Langham, 
who died in 1376, is again, in many respects, 
similar, and among the Westminster papers is pre- 
served the receipt for jC^^* given by Henry Yevele 
and Stephen Lote, on account, for making this 

We are next to find Master Henry Yevele 

directing (and designing) the mason-work for the 

reconstruction of Westminster Hall. A patent to 

John Godmerestone was issued for these works in 

1394, and in 1395 an agreement was made for the 

execution of the great cornice and corbels under 

the roof. This contract is printed by Rymer. The 

following is its purport : Indenture made between 

the king, on the one part, and Richard Washbourn 

and John Swalwe, masons, on the other part. Wit- 

nesseth that the said masons undertake to make 

well and loyally "a table" surmounting the ancient 

walls of the Grande Salle^ of Reigate stone, and to 

put "mar re-stone" (sea-stone = Caen) oumestier serruy 

according to the purport of a Fourme e Molde^ 

made by counsel of Mastre Henry Yevele, and 

delivered to the said masons by Watkin Waldon, 

his warden. And the said masons shall have 1 2d. 

a foot of assize along the wall, and they shall make 

26 souses (corbels) of marre-stone, and put them 

in place as convenient, wrought according to the 

purport of a "patron" shown to them by the 

treasurer, taking for each twenty soldy by the survey 

* Hist. MSS. Cornm. iv. p. 1 79. 



of Master Henry and Watkin, But the king will 
find all necessary stone, lime, sand, scaffolds, and 
gins, except hand-work, and the instruments by 
which masons work at their art ; finding also 
harbourage for the masons and their compaignons. 
Endorsed, UEndenture touchant les Masons du Roy* 

A Roll of 1395-6, now in the British Museum,!* 
is the account of Master Hugh Herland, one of the 
j^ king's carpenters, for payments made 

H h ^y John Godmeston, clerk to the 

jT I J works, for the reparations at the great 
hall and St. Stephen's Chapel. In this 
account the task-work undertaken by Washbourn 
and Swallow is mentioned ; also work done by 
Robert Kentbury (whose name we have had be- 
fore) and by Richard Smith. 

An interesting description of the roof of the 
Hall and " the beauty of the execution of this 
unique work" is given by VioUet-le-Duc, who 
points out that France has nothing of the same 
epoch comparable comme luxe de construction. Below 
we shall find that Master Hugh Herland was in 
1398 called carpenter and comptroller of the 
works at Westminster Hall, and there cannot be 
a doubt that he was the designer of the vast roof, 
and that, even more than Yevele, he deserves the 
name of architect to the hall. We have seen 
that he was the descendant of a family of carpenters, 
and that in 1365 he was working as foreman under 
his father, William, who died in 1375. A patent 
of I Richard H. (1377) is addressed to "Master 

♦ For death and tomb of Yevele, sec p. 219. t Add, Rolls 27,018. 



Hugh Herland, one of the late king s (Ed. HL) 
carpenters, whom the king has retained " ; and he 
is granted " lo marks yearly as in 40 Ed. HI." 

In 1378 the Master of the Hospital at Stroud 
was appointed " chief surveyor and clerk " at 
Rochester Castle (an office exactly like Wykeham's 
at Windsor). The work was to be done "by the 
survey and control of Master Hugh Herland, car- 
penter, at 1 2d. daily wages." In 1379 he was 
appointed " one of the king's master carpenters 
during pleasure, with 1 2d. daily wages and a winter 
robe yearly." He seems to have been younger in 
the service than Richard Swift, who was appointed 
to be " the king's master carpenter " on the same 
terms, in the year before, with a pension of 
IOCS. 8d. yearly in addition. In this year also 
Robert Franceys was made " one of the king's 
carpenters, constantly serving under the master of 
the carpenters, at 6d. daily. Richard Swift and 
Hugh Herland were commanded in 1381 to press 
fifty carpenters for the king's service in Brittany.* 

A Roll of 1 398-9 -f* gives "Particulars of the 
account of John Godmeston, clerk of the works, 
at the king's great hall ... by the sight and 
testimony of Master Hugh Herland, chief carpen- 
ter to the king and comptroller of the works." 
From the wages of the " officers " given at the end 
of the Roll it is seen that Master Hugh received 
IS. a day. A large number of carpenters were 
engaged, but the masonry was done by task-work. 
John Swallow and William Yford were paid for 
our windows in the side of the hall. Thomas 

* Patents. t Record Office, 22 Rich. II. 473, 11. 



Wolvey for mason's work in the two turrets, 20 ft. 
of battlement work to the gable and the great 
window in south gable. William Cleuddere worked 
some pinnacles and four images. A stage for the 
coronation of Henry IV. is included in the account. 
In another Roll, a year later. Master Hugh Herland 
still appears as " head carpenter to the king " and 
comptroller of the works.* 

Thomas Wolvey we saw was doing work for the 
new hall in 1398. Now Gough gives an inscrip- 
tion from a tomb at St. Michael's Church, St. 
Albans, to " Thomas Wolvey, latomus in arte . . . 
to King Richard," dated a.d. 1430. He appears to 
have been the father of masons for two genera- 
tions. Later another gravestone was placed in the 
same church to Richard Wolvey, lathomus, the son 
of John, and to his wife, eight daughters, and ten 
sons, of which Richard died in 1490. 

Master-mason Yevele, the designer of the stone- 
work of the new hall, and Herland, the contriver 
of the great roof, who had charge of the works, 
must have been familiar acquaintances of Chaucer, 
who, in 1390, was appointed Clericus Operatioum 
of the Royal Palaces.-f* Yevele must have been 
very old when the hall was undertaken, hence the 
close association with him of Watkin Waldon. 
Yevele died in 1400, and was buried in St. Magnus, 
London Bridge. Stow, apparently quoting the 
inscription on the tomb, writes : " Henry Yevele, 
Freemason to Edward III., Richard II. and Henry 
IV. who deceased in 1400 — his monument yet re- 
maineth." From his will it appears that he had 

♦ 473, 13. t Patent, 13 Rich. II. 



built his own tomb at St. Magnus, His property 
he left to his wife Katherine on condition that she 
employed two chaplains to celebrate in St, Magnus 
at St. Mary's altar, for the souls of Margaret, his 
late wife, his parents Roger and Marion, King 
Edward HI., Sir John Beauchamp, and others. 
His executors were John Clifford, mason, Stephen 
Lote, mason, and others. We have met Lote 
before (p. 216). Clifford would almost seem to have 
been a partner of Yevele's, for they are both, with 
Katherine, wife of the latter, parties to a deed in 
1389. It seems probable that Yevele must have 
worked for Sir John Beauchamp. Henry Yevele's 
will was proved in 1400 ; in it he is called 
" masoun " citizen and freeman, parishioner of St. 
Magnus, London Bridge.* From a list of property 
belonging to London Bridge we find that a tene- 
ment held by Henry Yevele, mason, was situate 
between the street on the east and the Oyster gate 
on the west, and was subject to a charge of 5s.-t* 
Perhaps the County Council will put up a tablet 
to this distinguished citizen. Judging from his 
work at Westminster Hall and from the nave of 
Winchester Cathedral, erected by his associate 
Wynford, Yevele practised in a big and bare style. 
He must have been one of the influences at work in 
transforming the art of 1350 into the " Perpen- 
dicular" of 1400. The Guildhall of London, 
begun in 141 1, is manifestly built in Yevele*s 
manner. We are usually told that the Perpendicular 
style is especially a product of Gloucester, and it 

♦ Sharpc. " Cal. of Wills," and Nichols, 
t Chronicle of London Bridge. 


does seem probable that the large work of applying 
slight casings there to the earlier building may have 
influenced the turn the style took. On the other 
hand, the Chapter House at St. Paul's of 1 332 seems 
to have approximated very closely to the Perpen- 
dicular manner, so also did St. Stephen's Chapel, 
and I should expect the first word in fashions to 
have been said by the King's Masons of London. 



Master Masons : Restoration : Sculpture : Construction : Bronze 
Work : Glazing. 

" One of the Statelyest and Daintiest Monuments of Europe both 
for the Chappell and for the Sepulcher'' 


The new Lady Chapel, built wholly in the six- 
teenth century, and yet without any taint of the 
^ Renaissance, witnesses well to the vi- 

T^jr tality of our national forms of work- 

manship berore they were overborne by 
the foreign fashions introduced by the king and 

As an exercise in architectural composition of 
intentionally romantic cast, self-conscious, elaborate, 
and artificial, it is a work of extraordinary merit. The 
planning of the wide nave, and aisles so narrow as to 
be almost blocked by the fine Elizabethan tombs,* 
the very beautiful bending of the external wall into 
a series of bay windows, the marvellous skill of the 
vaulting, which has been well analysed by Professor 
Willis, and the profusion of finely arranged and 
well-wrought sculptures, make a wonderful whole. 

The foundation stone of this chapel was laid on 
January 24, 1 502, by the king. The inscription 
on it is given by Holinshed. In 1509, im- 
mediately before his death, the king drew up a 
will giving details as to his intentions for the com- 

• One of which was taken by Stevens, I believe, as a type of his 
Wellington Monument. 


pletion of the chapel, and mentioning " a plat 
signed by our hands." It is probable that the 
structure was nearly completed by 1512, when 
Torregiano began the noble bronze effigies of the 
late king and queen, after an earlier scheme for 
the tomb had been abandoned. In regard to this 
earlier scheme a memorandum, dated 1509, at 
the Record Office, referred to more fully below, 
states that Robert Vertue, Robert Jenins, and John 
Lebons, " the King's III m'- masons, say that the 
workmanship in the black touchstone and white 
marble will cost," &c. There can hardly be a 
doubt that one of the king's three master masons 
who were so consulted as to the cost of the tomb 
was the chief master engaged at the same time in 
building the chapel. Robert Vertue was probably 
father or brother of W. Vertue, who about this 
time was working at Windsor, and Robert Jenins 
was probably a son of the master mason at St. 
George's Chapel. 

There are, indeed, so many relations between 
Edward the Fourth's work at Windsor and Henry 
the Seventh's Chapel at Westminster, that it may 
be well to give a glance back to the earlier work. 
In a MS. Roll of 1482-3 entitled " The Chapel ot 
St. George, Windsor," the name of Henry Janyns 
is given amongst the " officers," as principal cemen- 
tariusj receiving jC^^ ^ Y^^^ J John Tresilian being 
principal smith at ^^24 5s. ; and Thomas Chan- 
cellor, clerk to the works, at jC^o. The mason, 
carpenter, and clerks received gowns of office.* 

This Henry Janyns may very well be a son of 

* Record Office. Exchequer Accounts, 496, 28. 



the Robert Janyns who, about 1450, was the 
master mason engaged in building the tower of 
Merton College, Oxford.* This relation may be 
significant, as the vault of Henry the Seventh's 
Chapel is a developed copy of that of the Divinity 
School, Oxford. 

In 1505 an indenture was made with John 
Hylmer and William Vertue, free-masons, by which 
they agreed to vault the choir of St. George's 
Chapel, according to the roof of the body (nave) of 
the same in seven severies, with archibotants out- 
side and king's beasts standing on them [these are 
now lost], but the pendants of the vaults were to be 
more pendant and hoUower than those of the body, 
[so they are.] John and William bound them- 
selves to find all manner of stone and timber, and 
all things necessary with carriage, and to finish the 
work for jC?^^ ^y Christmas i5o8.-f- 

Robert Ellis and John Filles, carvers, did some 
of the tabernacles of the stalls, and Derrick van 
Grobe and Giles Van Castel were engaged on the 
imagery. In 1 5 1 o William Virtue was granted to 
be master mason during pleasure at the Tower and 
elsewhere, with 1 2d. a day and a robe like the suit 
of Squires of the Household, as lately held by 
Thomas Danyll. 

At a later date (15 16) we find that Master 
Vertue and Henry Redmain were working together 
at Eton on the work at the west side of the court, 
including Lupton's tower. They each received a 
fee of 1 3s. 4d. A plat, and a picture of the front, 

• Accounts printed by Thorold Rogers^ " History of Prices,*' vol. ii. 
t Tighe and Davis. 


are mentioned. Humphrey Coke was the carpen- 
ter. He, in 1509, was paid 6s. 8d. for figuring 
the plat of the cloister. He was made chief 
carpenter in 1519. 

In 1520 Vertue again received los. for super- 
vision of the " New Work." As Willis and Clark 
suggest, he must be the same William Vertue who 
vaulted the choir of St. George*s Chapel, 1 505-8. 
The same William Vertue in 1 5 1 2 assisted William 
Este, of Oxford, to build Corpus Christi College.* 

We will now return to the master of Henry 
the Seventh's Chapel. In 1501, the year before the 
foundation of the new chapel, Robert Vertue re- 
ceived £^0^ in part payment of ^100, for building 
a new tower at the Tower of London. In 1503 
^10 was advanced to him in part payment for 
making a new " plat " at Greenwich. There can 
now be no doubt that the senior king's mason who 
was the designer of Henry the Seventh's Palace of 
Pleasaunce at Greenwich (a great mass of buildings 
something like the early work at Hampton Court), 
and who, as we have seen, was referred to in 
regard to the cost of the tomb in the chapel some 
years later, was also the architect of the chapel 

From the household accounts of Henry VII. 
from which the above facts are obtained, it is 
apparent that the building of the chapel was 

* Papworth. Este had been the master mason for the king's works 
at Woodstock. He is mentioned in 1495, and in 1501 he received j(^8oo 
in full payment for the building of Woodstock. British Museum, Add, 
7099. Household Exp,^ H 7, W. Vertue and Henry Redmayne were 
still king's masons in 1519, and the former was working as late as 1526. 

P ^^S 


pushed forward very rapidly. Dating from 1 503 
some iCsooo were quickly paid in instalments to 
the Abbot on account, then £s^^^ followed '' by 
indenture," as well as nearly another thousand.* 
Holinshed tells us that the total cost was ^14,000. 

The king*s chief carpenters about this time were 
Story, working at Greenwich in 1498, and Thomas 
Mauncy, who built new chambers at Westminster 
Palace in 1497, ^"^ rebuilt Baynard's Castle in the 

The agreement of style between the details ot 
masonry at Westminster and St. George's Chapel 
is very marked, and it is therefore interesting to 
find a relationship between the masters engaged at 
both places. The choir vault of Christ Church 
and the gateway of Tom Quad at Oxford also have 
affinities with Henry the Seventh's Chapel. 

Among the Cottonian MSS. (Aug. A. 2.) is 
preserved a large drawing for a tomb which, it has 
been shown, is probably a design for the tomb of 
Henry VI., which was to have been placed in the 
new chapel at Westminster. We may assign this 
" plat " to one of the Vertues. The tomb appears 
to have been begun at Windsor, as in 1 501-3 
Master Esterfield was paid for "the king's tomb 
at Windsor," and a further sum was paid to the 
same for bringing it to Westminster. It has been 
thought, as money was also advanced to Esterfield 
for works at Woking, that he was a mason ;-f- but 
he was rather the king's man of business.:}; 

• British Museum. Add. 7099. t Gough ; also Papworth. 

X In the Household Accounts sqmc entries reljitc to hi? bprrowing 
jf 100 for the king, 


Mr. A. Higgins has suggested that the work 
sent to Westminster was the bronze grille of Henry 
VII.'s tomb, that it was being made by Ester- 
field, and that he might be a Fleming. It seems 
improbable that the brazen grate can be other than 
London work, and it is mentioned in the will of 
1 509 as incomplete. Widmore has said that the 
Convent actually brought Henry VI's. body from 
Windsor in 150 1. Be this as it may, the king, 
who was first buried at Chertsey, and who, 
Henry VII. hoped, would be made a saint and 
become the chief relic of the new chapel, ulti- 
mately found a modest resting-place at Windsor.* 

The exterior of our chapel was entirely renewed 
in the early part of last century, so that, in fact, it 
P is now only a full-sized copy of itself. 

The external stone-work seems to have 
been decayed even in Wren's day ; 
he calls it a nice embroidered work perfected in 
tender Caen stone. Amongst Mr. Lee's drawings is 
one of about 1700-20, which shows one of the bays 
to a large scale when the niches were still inhabited 
by the statues which were afterwards removed, 
" lest the Ministry should be injured."-f- The 
parapet is also shown, the original form of which 
has been discussed. In the restoration of 1807-22 
the whole exterior was renewed by Thomas 
Gayfere, the Abbey mason, acting under Wyatt, 

* In the Egerton Collection, 2358, is a book of building accounts for 
Greenwich, the Tower, and Westminster in 1 500-2. Walter Martyn, 
John Carter, and John Tracey are named as masons. 

t Dart. In 17 12, as shown by the nccounts for Wren's restorations 
now in the Bodleian, 



the most famous restoring-away architect of his 
time. In a series of articles in the Gentleman's 
Magazine^ John Carter chronicled 
the usual stupidities of such work. 
The old surface was entirely 
chopped away and replaced by a 
copy of that which could not be 
copied. Before this time it had 
been terribly let down, as may 
be seen in Carter's description of 
its state, but more by neglect 
than decay. 

A full account of the proceed- 
ings which led up to this under- 
taking is given by Cottingham. 
Gay fere, the mason, was ex- 
amined and asked : *' Is the 
masonry so totally decayed ex- 
ternally that the whole must have 
a new ashlaring ? " " Certainly 
not," he replied, " as many parts 
of the present work, particularly 
on the north side, are nearly 
perfect. . . . The flying but- 
tresses are all very much decayed, 
as are all the domes of the turrets, 
which work must come down as 
low as the canopies at least." 
The House of Commons Com- 
mittee then ordered that it should be restored to a 
substantial state, but without removing the parts 
which were not decayed, and without reworking 
any of the old surfaces, which were to be retained. 


Fig. 74. — Statue of St. 
Anne, Henry Vllth 
Chapel. Drawn by Mr. 
R. Webster 


The Dean, however, gave the order to proceed, 
unless stopped by an injunction, " as originally in- 
tended." Later there was another 
inquiry as to why the directions of 
the House of Commons had not 
been carried into effect, but it was 
now too late. The " unwise proce- 
dure," says Neale, " was fortunately 
counteracted by x\i^ firmness of the 
Dean." The result was, as William 
Morris put it, " Mr. Wyatt managed 
to take all the romance out of the 
exterior of this most romantic 
work of the late Middle Ages." 

Some record of the forty-eight 
statues which stood about the pin- 
o /^. nacles has been preserved 

^ m the copied names 

carved on labels forming part of 
their pedestals, of which a list has 
been printed.* They comprised 
Apostles, Evangelists, Prophets, 
and Ancestors of the Virgin. 
Amongst the Apostles were Paul 
and Barnabas. Among the Pro- 
phets, St. John Baptist and the 
three companions of Daniel — 
Misael, Ananias, and Azarias. The 
last group is an interesting point in 
iconography if it could be guaranteed to be original. 

The statues of the interior, nearly a hundred in 

• By Mr, Micklethwaite. Archaologia^ xlvii. 


Fig. 75. — Sutue of 
St. George, Henry 
Vllth Chapel. 
Drawn by Mr. R. 


all, form our largest assemblage of sculptured saints 
after those on the west front of Wells. They are 
generally in good preservation and are full of char- 
acter. It is hard to imagine a finer congregation 
of stone saints. At the east end is Christ, with the 
Virgin and the Angel of the Annunciation directly 
to the right and left ; then come the Apostles and 
the most popular saints of the time.* Lawrence 
Imber, image-maker, mentioned below, may have 
sculptured some of these statues, and I find in a 
Roll of 1500 for works at Westminster, &c., the 
names of John Hudd, " sculptor,*' Richard Codin- 
ham, Robert Belamy, and Nicholas Delphyn.-f- 
Some may have been ordered from Master 
Drawswerd, the well-known image-maker of 

In his will the king provided that the walls, 
doors, windows, arches, vaults, and images should 
" be painted, garnished, and adorned goodly and 

Notwithstanding the redundancy of ornament 
with which the building is overlaid, both without 
^ and within, the essential structure itself 

. ^ r is of a very high order of constructive 
^, ^ , imagination. The counterpoising of the 
^ * wide central span by the stout buttress- 
flyers; the weighty pinnacled buttress-piers designed 
as a series of complete octagonal turrets rising from 
the ground ; the bay-fillings, which are mere 
window-screens between these turrets, bent and 

• See Mr. Micklethwaite's admirable paper, 
t British Museum. Egerton MSB. 2358. 


bowed on plan (Fig. 76) ; and, above all, the 
vault, are all extraordinary inventions. 

The vault, which seems at first to be a question- 
able tour-de-force ^ combines conflicting excellences 
with surprising skill. Perhaps the chief problem 
of vaulting has been how to open out high windows 
in it while allowing the vault ^^^^ ,^^ 

itself to spring sufficiently low ^^j^^B^^r^^^^^f^ 
down on the walls. In the ^Km ^By 

church the windows arc pushed v ^ ^c d.„j^.:^« 

. , f , Fig. 76. — Bay design, 

high up into the vault, but Henry the Seventh's 

the wall-ribs springing from Chapel 

the same height as the great 
transverse ribs leave only very acutely pointed 
spaces for the windows. Here, in Henry VH.'s 
Chapel, the spaces left are almost square the whole 
way up. This is accomplished by springing the 
vault-filling not from the angles next the walls but 
from the main ribs, some distance in from the walls ; 
and the spandrels of the main ribs, below this point, 
being pierced, permit of the windows being seen 
through these piercings in a raking view. The pen- 
dants are immaterial to the principle of the vault, 
and if a diagram be made shearing them off in the 
line of the big arches, and removing all the ornamen- 
tation, the value of the solution offered by this 
vault will be apparent. As geometry and stone- 
cutting it is wonderful. The web of the vault is 
only about 3^ inches thick. The constructive 
scheme is much more clearly evident in the vault 
of the Divinity School at Oxford {c. 1480), as 
there the great transverse arches are not hidden by 

the vault web, and the pendants are much less pro- 



nounced. The likeness is so great, however, that 

we must speak of the Westminster vault as a copy 

of that at Oxford. 

Figure jj^ A is a diagram of the constructive idea 

of the vault of Henry 
VII.'s Chapel. In con- 
sidering it, it is evident 
that in its simplest terms 
it is a cross-groined vault 
over oblong compart- 
ments, the curve of the 
transverse penetrations 
being segments of the 
highest and central part 
of the longitudinal vault. 
The lower part of the 
longitudinal vault be- 
comes in this scheme a 
series of arched wall- 
spandrels. Now the vault 
over the choir of Christ- 
^ church, Oxford, is foun- 

System, Henry vilth's Chapel ded directly on this solu- 
tion (Fig. jj B). In this 

the upper part of the arched ribs are hidden in 

the vault surface as at Westminster. 

A B 

Fig. 77. — Diagram of Vault 

The tomb-screen, or rather chantry, is an extra- 
ordinarily beautiful work, one of the most masterly 
D pieces of metal casting in Europe. It 

jiz i^ is conceived with great frankness as a 

little building of brass, all of open-work 

lattices, traceries, and brattishings, with turret-like 



projections at the corners, all the details sharp and 
vivid ; and the inscriptions, badges of greyhounds 
and red dragons, and images, are triumphs of skill. 
" There they set up his monument, in a brazen 
impalement which looks like work not of our 
moderns but of Bazaleel.* 

In his will Henry VII. speaks of it as "a grate 
in manner of a closure of copper, and gilt, after the 
fashion which we have begun, which we will by 
our said executors be fully accomplished." 

In or about 1506 Lawrence Imber, Drawswerd 
of York, and others, made estimates for the images 
for Henry VII. 's tomb. The first-named probably 
made the patterns for the existing bronze " grate " 
or " closure," with its statues of Apostles and saints, 
which was begun before the king's death, as the 
estimate of the tomb sets out that he was to make 
" patrones " in timber of the images which were to 
be cast by Nicholas Ewen, and speaks of him as 
" the Imagere " and carver. Thomas Drawswerd 
was one of a famous York family of image-makers. 
He is mentioned in the Cathedral Fabric Rolls of 
1498. He was Sheriff of York in 1505, M.P. in 
1 5 1 2, Mayor in 1 5 1 5, and was still living in 1 529.-t' 
About 1508 he carved the screens at Newark. 

A copy of the original estimate in the British 
Museum X of the proposed tomb which was never 
executed in that form, is entitled " An estimate of 
the charge for making of a tomb for K. Hen. VII. 
to be erected in his Chapel of Westminster, which 
plott was afterwards disliked by K. Hen. VIIL 

♦ Racket. " Life of Bishop Williams." 

t R.iyne, in Surtees Society. X Harl., 297. 



and altered according as it now stands/'* The 
original at the Record Office is endorsed in the 
hand of Henry VIII. himself: "A remembrance 
of certain names and prices for making of a tomb."-f- 
The document reads : Lawrence Ymber, karver, 
for making the patrones in timber. The Imagere 
saith that the two images which be lying in the 
tombe, and the king's image kneeling upon the 
tombe — the workmanship perfectly done : 4 Lordes 
images kneeling upon the tomb : 12 small images 
in every side : will cost £6^. 

Mem. Drawswerd, Sheriff of York, for the 
same, to make them as well as can be done, 
&c. &c., £2^. 

Humphrey Walker, founder, says how much fine 
yellow metal would be required for the nineteen 
images great and small. I 

John Bell and John Maynard, painters, say that 
the royal painting work in colours, and workman- 
ship that shall be done, would cost ... § 

Robert Vertue, Robert Jenins, and John Lebons, 
the King's III. master masons, say that the work- 
manship of the black touchstone and the white 

• For Torregiano's work. t Gairdner's Cal. Hen. VIII. 

t He was a gun founder, and was appointed gunner at the Tower 
in 1509. In 1517 he supplied iron shot (cast iron?) for the King's 

§ It is difficult to think that the gilt bronze was to be picked out with 
paintingj but the effigy of Margeret of York, in the south aisle, has the 
face and hands and the fur of the robe painted. The engraving in 
Sandford shows that the angels at the foot carried banners, one of 
England, and one of the red dragon of Wales. These bearings must 
have been painted, and it seems from Mr. Higgins' account that there 
was painting on the effigies. 


marble stone for the said tomb after the manner of 
the moulding of the patrone that Master Pageny 
got made will cost ^^84 ; which will be delivered 
ready wrought within one year. 

Master Finche and Roger Thorney, merchants, 
say that 100 ft. of touchstone for the ledge and 
base, and 80 feet of white marble, will be enough 
for the sides and ends. 

It has been shown by Mr. Micklethwaite that 
Pageny must be the English version of Paganino, 
the name of an Italian artist who was at this time 
engaged on a tomb at St. Denis.* 

The design, whether specially prepared by 
"Pageny" or adapted from a model of his work 
can be interpreted from the description. It was 
to be of black and white marble about 10 by 6 ft.; 
around the sides were to be twelve small figures and 
on the tomb full-sized effigies of the king and queen, 
also the kneeling figure of the king attended by 
four lords. To carve the models for these nineteen 
figures of bronze, " great and small," Lawrence 
Ymber and Drawswerd of York were thought the 
most able in the kingdom, and gave competitive 
estimates for so doing. These estimates give the 
original scheme for finishing the tomb in due rela- 
tion to the grate begun in the king*s lifetime.-t* 

Some of the small figures which still remain in 
the niches of the grate are probably Ymber's work. 

* See for this, and all Renaissance work at the Abbey, Mr. A. 
Higgins' admirable paper in Archaological Journal^ 1894. I have no 
doubt that Torregiano*8 noble tSi^ of Henry VII. was the original for 
Holbein's portrait, the cartoon for which is at Chatsworth. 

t It is noted also that the wood pattern for a bronze effigy at 
Ormskirk had been carved by John Hales. 



Many of them are lost. Some were stolen in 1570, 
and further damage seems to have been done in 
1643, when, it is said, "The stately screen of 
copper richly gilt, set up by Henry VII. in his 
chapel, was by order of the House reformed, that 
is, broken down and sold to tinkers."* But this 
is a great exaggeration. Mr. Burges spoke rather 
slightingly of the little bronze images belonging 
to the grate, but this opinion, I think, needs 
revision. For their purpose they seem wonderfully 
forceful, and not without grace. The St. George 
at the west end is, perhaps, especially beautiful. 
The others are the Confessor on the south and 
St. James Major on the east, all in the upper range. 
Below, on the south, are St. John the Evangelist 
with the cup, and St. Bartholomew, carrying his 
skin over his arm, also a prophet on the north. 
The general arrangement was doubtless to have 
the twelve Apostles occupying the whole east end 
and the lower range on the south, with prophets 
below to the north. The figures of the upper 
range — north, west, and south — if we may judge 
from St. George and the Confessor, and the indica- 
tion of kings given on Sandford's engraving, were 
national saints. 

The existing tomb of Henry VII. and of his 
queen was the work of Torregiano, the Florentine, 
who entered into a contract for the work in the 
year 1 5 1 2, to make *' well, surely, cleanly, work- 

• Quoted in Haines' "Brasses," p. cclv. In 1556 John Russell, 
m' carpenter, was paid ^fio for repairing "the house where the tomb 
of copper standeth at Westminster, that the same may be more safely 
kept" (Jupp. Carpenter's Company). 


manly, curiously, and substantially," for the sum of 
^^1500, a tomb of marble with "images, figures, 
beasts, and other things, of copper gilt." The 
work seems to have been completed about 

The tomb of Margaret of Richmond in the 
south aisle of the chapel is also obviously by the same 
artist, although in the accessories the style of an 
English assistant is seen. This, indeed, is also the 
case with the king's tomb, in which the large rose, 
with its supporters of a greyhound and a dragon, 
at the north end, is clearly English work, as also 
is, very probably, the coat-of-arms at the other 

The three portrait statues are truly magnificent 
works of art, both in their design and modelling. 
Although so splendid they are yet simple, quiet, 
and serious, and the faces and hands are entirely 
noble. While not so romantic and unapproachable 
as the thirteenth-century statue of Queen Alianor, 
these are altogether the greatest sculptures ever 
wrought in England. 

The glazing of the chapel seems to have been of 
" stories and images " in brilliant colour above ; 
p , . and of badges below. Sketches of some 

^* of the latter are preserved in the 
Powell Collection in the British Museum. Hatton 
says that much of the glass of the western window 
was " finely stained," and those of the* aisles were 
"painted with the fleur-de-lis, rose, and port- 
cullis crowned." Some fragments still remain, 

• Mr. St. John Hope. 



especially in the tracery of the west window, 
which is filled with roses, feathers, and other 

This glazing was almost certainly the work of 
Bernard Flower, the most famous glazier of the 
time. The design for it is mentioned in the king's 
will of 1 509. — We will that . . . the said chapel 
be desked, and the windows glazed with stories, 
images, arms, badges, and " cognoissaunts," as is by 
us ready devised and in picture delivered to the 
Prior of St. Bartholomew, master of the works of 
the said chapel. 

Now we find an account of Bernard Flower's 
which shows that he, with Andreano Andrew and 
William Ashe, was doing a large quantity of glass 
("of Normandy ") for Henry VII. at Westminster 
and Greenwich from 1500 to 1502. Moreover, 
amongst seven contracts made for completing 
King's College Chapel in 1516 was one with 
Galyon Hoon, Richard Bowde, Thomas Reve, 
and James Nicholson, all glaziers of London, for 
windows " after the form, manner, goodness, 
curiosity, and cleanness of the windows of the 
king's new chapel at Westminster, after such 
manner as one Bernard Flower, glazier, lately 
deceased, by indenture stood to do." They also 
undertook to deliver to Francis Williamson, of 
Southwark, and Simon Symonds, of Westminster, 
good and true patrons, otherwise called vidamus^ 
for four upper windows of orient colours after the 
manner of the king's new chapel at Westminster, 
and according to the manner done by Bernard 

• Neale gives the fullest account of what remains. 


Flower.* The wooden stalls are very German in 
feeling, and this may be accounted for by the influ- 
ence of such carvers as Derrick van Grove and 
Giles van Castel, who, as we saw above, were 
engaged at St. George's Chapel.-f- 

The arrangement of these stalls and the position 
of the king's tomb have been changed as described 
in " Gleanings." We have also to imagine the glow 
of the windows and the first splendour of the gilt- 
bronze chantry. Still, however, it must always 
have been true as it is now, " that which most 
gluts the beholder s eye is the incomparable roof." 

• The glazing at Hampton Court for Henry VIII. after 1530 was 
by the first named " Galyon Hoon, the king's glazier," who glazed the 
forty-eight lights of the great bay at 5d. a foot. 

t Some of the carvings have been identified as copied from 
engravings by Durer and other German artists. 



Image Makers : Westminster Sculptures : Master John of St. Albans : 
Masters Alexander of Abingdon and William of Ireland : Master 
Richard of Reading : Effigies : Hawkin of Li^ge : Westminster Hall : 
Henry VII.'s Chantry. 

He made an image ofentaik^ 
So fair yet never was figure, 


It is impossible to divide off those who practised 
sculpture from ordinary free-masons. In Italy 
, Niccolo Pisano was a " stone-cutter " 

„ I equally expert in all the branches of 

the craft. In France Jean de Soignoles 
(1359)* was called " mafon et ymageur." In 
England John Bell, mason, agreed, in 1488, to serve 
the Chapter of Durham for " all their works of 
masonry with imagery and other," being without 
deceit, obedient, and buxom. And in the agree- 
ment for the sculptured Jesse-tree reredos in St. 
Cuthbert's, Wells, made in 1470, John Stowell, free- 
mason, undertook for forty pounds to execute 
** the workmanship and masonry craft of a Jesse 

Sculpture was also largely produced in shops, 
and there was a class of image- workers and 
marblers who made and distributed tombs just as 
there was a class of goldsmiths who sold cups, or of 
woodworkers who made chests and other furniture. 
Besides "tailleurs d'images," who devoted them- 

• Godefroi ; Diet, Old French, 


selves to carving images, there were even others 
who were specially painters of sculpture.* 

In this way sculpture of the highest excellence 
was distributed, and when, in remote country 
churches, tomb effigies of wimpled ladies and 
mailed knights are found, which are almost exactly 
like those of Aveline or Crouchback at Westmin- 
ster, we cannot doubt that they were ordered from 
London or some other important centre.*!- 

The marblers of Corfe, the alabaster men of 
Nottingham, the masons of Barnack, and the 
bronze-founders of London and Gloucester, did large 
distributing trades. Gothic art, we must remember, 
was not only wrought at buildings, but in all the 
shops of all the towns. I have not found any Guild of 
London sculptors mentioned ; they and the marblers 
may have formed one fraternity. The earliest names 
of London sculptors known to me are Thomas 
the image-worker and Richard his son, in 1226.:]; 

At Westminster only the wreckage of the sculp- 
ture which once adorned the church now remains 
y^ . to us, and this is perishing day by day 
almost unrecorded. Until about 1870 
^ J the carvings of the entrance to the 

^ * Chapter House, preserved by their coat 
of paint, were comparatively perfect, but in a 
generation they have mouldered out of all form. 
One of two angels which guarded a central figure 
of the Virgin, less injured than the rest, is an 

• See Etiennc Bolicau. Regulations of the Crafts of Paris, c. 1250. 
t In the Fasten Letters we have a record of the ordering of a tomb. 
X ** Liber Albus," p. 26. 

Q 24* 


extremely beautiful fragment. The sculpture of 
the outer order of the great arch forms a tree of 
Jesse. Jesse can still be seen at the bottom on the 
left, and David with the harp next above. The 
lowest figures on both sides are much alike, 
probably the Royal line is figured on one side and 
the Priestly line on the other. 

The colouring of this door has been noticed on 
page 42. From Malcolm we learn some further 
particulars of the painting with which this door- 
way was once adorned. The sculpture of the great 
arch was gilt, the hollows being coloured black and 
scarlet, the foliage of the tympanum was also gilt, 
and the sub-arches were decorated with white 
foliage on a red ground, and with gilt flowers. 

Within the Chapter House the two magnificent 
figures of the Virgin and the Angel of the Annun- 
ciation, which stand, one on either side of the door, 
are nowhere surpassed in effective action and ele- 
vated expression, and may stand with any architec- 
tural sculpture in the world. The angel formerly 
had wings, which were fixed by mortices.* In the 
short Roll of Accounts for 1253, two images 
wrought by task- work for 53s. 4d. are mentioned, 
and these may be the very images. *!• It is to be 
noted that this account is headed " Work at the 
Church, Chapter, and Belfry," and everything goes 
to prove that the Chapter House was being finished 
in this year. The little figures set in the meander 
of foliage up the jambs of the doorways are also 
lovely, and even now large photographs would 
record much of value and beauty. These figures 

• Scott's " Recollections." t As suggested by Mr. E. S. Prior. 


are, I 'believe, the patriarchs. At the bottom 
Adam seems to pluck a fruit ; a little higher, 
Tubal Cain or some other holds the symbol of 
some craft, and still higher is Moses. 

Around the interior great arch the figures are of 
prophets. These belong to the cycle of subjects 
which usually accompany the Virgin, and I have 
no doubt that the centre of the tympanum once 
contained her image. The destruction of the tym- 
panum goes to confirm this. The Prophets are set 
in a carved moulding entirely undercut, and when 
examined closely are seen to be of great beauty. 

In the church the noble angels swinging their 
thuribles high up in the transepts are the most 
important sculptures which remain. Two figures 
on the intermediate arch spandrels on the south side 
have not been explained.* Figures of Henry III. 
and the Confessor stand in the window jambs of 
the north transept,-f- and small half figures of angels 
are carved in the soffites of the arches of the same 
windows, and some of Cottingham's casts of these 
are now in the Architectural Museum. In the 
catalogue of his collection twenty-four are described. 
Each one held either a palm -branch, a crown, a 
chalice, a quadrant, a sun-dial, or a musical instru- 
ment, such as cymbals, dulcimer, bell, harp, viol, 
and reed-pipes. In St. Faith's Chapel there are 
some corbel-heads which are marvels of swift 

* The best suggestion that I can make is that the figure to the left 
is the Ginfessor, and the figure to the right is the Pilgrim. It is possible 
that it represents the giving back of the ring, and in that case the two 
lost figures of the north transept would have been of the more usual 
scene. t Sec Neale. 



cutting. This chapel had been out of use and had 
never had gas, that most destructive agent, burnt 
in it until about eight years ago, and the stone-work 
here is consequently very sharp and fresh. On the 
north side, notice a lady*s head, with linen head- 
dress, a smiling negro, and two grotesques. Also 
on the south side, three heads in the recess, the 
central one being very noble ; the exaggerations 
are just enough to make these heads tell in the 
shade. High up in the North Transept forming a 
corbel, above which stood an image, is a very 
characteristic man's head in good condition. It 
looks like the portrait of a lay master, and may 
very well represent John of Gloucester, mason, or 
John of St. Alban's, sculptor (Fig. 67). In the tri- 
forium around the apse there are also some delight- 
ful corbels designed as half figures. In a window 
recess, recently opened out at the south end of 
the muniment chamber, some heads and bosses 
are perfectly preserved. One large head to the 
right is of extraordinary beauty, and a boss of a 
woman fighting a dragon is a master work. The 
spandrels of the wall-arcade of the ground floor are 
filled with foliage and figures. On the west side 
of the North Transept are Michael and the Dragon, 
an angel censing, a thorn-bush and deaf adders — all 
very fine. In the north-east chapel of the North 
Transept are others ; one of St. Margaret. In 
St. Paul's Chapel there is some delicate figure 
work behind the monuments, how delicate can be 
seen from some fragments in a case in the Chapter 
House ; one cf the groups seems to be of St. Anne 

teaching the Virgin. In one of the south-east 


chapels is an angel with extended arms holding two 
crowns. In the spandrels of the choir-arcades are 
a fine series of coats of arms. The bosses of the 
west aisle of the north transept have figures. 

All the sculptures mentioned, with the exception 
of the shields of arms, are comprised in the first 
yj^ work of Henry HI., which was being 

y , finished about 1258-60. Now in 1257-8 

^ ' John of St. Alban's, "sculptor of the 

king's images," received a robe of office while work- 
ing at Westminster along with Peter of Hispania, 
the painter, and Alexander, the carpenter.* In 
John of St. Alban's, therefore, we have the master 
sculptor of these works of art. That there was a 
school of sculpture at the Abbey at this time is 
shown by the fact that the year after this John of 
Gloucester, " keeper of the works," was to cause the 
keepers of the works at St. Martin's (le Grand) to re- 
ceive five imagines regum incisas in franca petra. Two 
years later, again, the keeper of the work at Ludgate 
was to have thirteen free stones from the king's mason 
at Westminster ad sculpand. images for the gate. 

The accounts for the Alianor Crosses (1292-4) 
show that the still-existing statues of the queen at 
j^ Waltham were sculptured by Alexander 

^ J . of Abingdon, le imaginator^ and those 
, at Northampton were by William of 

ITT' 11' Ireland, and we even know that they cost 

iCs 6s. 8d. each (5 marks). These 
statues are of great beauty, romantic yet so quiet, 

• Close Rolls. 


the crown of English Gothic sculpture. Funny 
old images ! How few care for them, or know of 
Alexander of Abingdon or William the Irishman, 
the sculptors who wrought them. These same 
sculptors cut the images for all the other, now 
destroyed, crosses, so that we cannot doubt that they 
belonged to the Westminster School of Artificers. 
The Charing Cross figures were by Alexander, so 
that he was probably the chief master sculptor 
of his time. The name of Alexander, le imagour^ 
occurs twice in the City Letter Books, in 1 305-1 2.* 
Dr. Sharpe has been kind enough to inform me 
that in the first case the sculptor enters into a bond 
for a debt, and in the other promises to perform 
work for the parson of Stanwell Church, as he had 
undertaken by indenture. These agreements, 
entered at Guildhall, show that Alexander was a 
citizen of London, and that he supplied images 
for country churches as mentioned above. The 
Alianor Crosses were finished about 1295. In the 
following year Edward Crouchback died, and it 
may be that his effigy is the work of one of the 
imagers named, although, judging from the style, 
the erection of the tomb was delayed for several 
years. The figure of Aveline, his wife, on another 
tomb, closely resembles the queen's statues. 
Aveline was a great heiress ; she was married in 
1268, and died while a girl of twenty-one in 1273. 
Her statue is terribly decayed ; its memory is best 
preserved in Stothard's etchings. The sway and 
draping of the body are exquisite. Her husband's 

• See Sharpe's " Cal. of Wills," i. p. 558. The Letter Books have 
now been printed. 


statue is in better preservation, and is an ideal 
knight's figure ; a lion at his feet is superb, and the 
weepers are only surpassed by those on Aymer de 
Valence's tomb. 

Three heads, a king and two abbots, on the 
sedilia, being of wood and out of reach, are well 
preserved, and very fine both in workmanship and 
expression. They were carved about 1308. They 
have never been carefully drawn or photographed. 

Aymer de Valence died in 1323. His effigy is 
perhaps even finer than that of Crouchback ; cer- 
tainly the weepers are the most exquisite small 
sculptures in England. They are of the gayest type, 
and show close observation of character and gesture, 
of the fashionable fall of mantles, and the proper 
way to hold gloves, and are as vividly studied as 
Tanagra figurines, and should be of much more 
concern to us. There are casts of some of them in 
the Soane Museum taken some hundred years since 
when they were more perfect.* 

In 1324-5 certain " imaginatori " of London were 
paid for working images for the stone choir screen 
at Exeter, but their work has disappeared. 

In 1333 Master Richard of Reading was paid 
£2 6s. 8d. for making by task-work images of 
j^ St. Edward and the Pilgrim for the 

/?' h d S^^^^ ^^ ^^* Stephen's Chapel.-f- In 
1 3 19 a Richard of Reading, possibly 
the same, was interested in some tenements at 

* We may note here that an artist while making a crucifix for a 
Yorkshire Abbey in the middle of the fourteenth century, had a naked 
man, whom he strove to imitate, constantly before him. Jusserand's 
" Lit. Hist. Eng.," p. 265. t J. T. Smith. 



Westminster.* In default of better evidence we 
may assign the sculpture of Aymer de Valence's 
tomb to Master Richard. 

The effigy of John of Eltham (died in 1336) and 
the bright little " weepers " in the " hovels " or 
" housings '* around the tomb might, as it is of 
alabaster, have been, like so much later sculpture 
in this material, wrought at Nottingham. (The 
image of Edward II. at Gloucester is, I think, by 
the same sculptor.) There is a reference to 
this tomb which I can hardly explain. In 1351 
Edward III. wrote to the abbot that the body of 
his brother, John Earl of Cornwall, should be moved 
to some fitting place " entre les roials " agreeable to 
the devise of the Queen-mother Isabella, places 
being reserved for the King and his heirs. With 
all its beauty. Prince John's tomb is just a little 
shoppy and over-easy ; but the extraordinarily 
delicate tabernacle which once surmounted the 
tomb must have given it the mystery it now lacks. -f- 

This effigy, as it can so easily be examined, may 
serve as an example of how the mediaeval sculptors, 
-p^n- ' being stone-cutters and not clay model- 

mS ^' lers, always filled their work out to the 
full size of the original block. Notice how from 
the practical point of view the angels at the head and 
the beast at the foot were put in just to square out 

• Hardy and Page. Middlesex Fines. 

t Dart says it was of •* delicate wrought spires and mason's work, 
intermixed and adorned with little images and angels." The tomb 
proper is remarkable, the alabaster being cut out so that what is left is 
very thin ; the ground about the weepers was then //Vrr^^/, and the whole 
backed with dark stone. For canopy, see Sandford. 



the block, and how all the points of high relief 
come to one plane so that a drawing-board might 
be firmly placed on the statue.* So much for the 
influence of workmanship on design. It is hardly 
a paradox to say that everything may be traced to 
that, as from another point of view all may be 
traced to poetic instinct. And this is perfect art, 
the long developed tradition which wholly inter- 
penetrates the material conditions with spiritual 

From the side of thought, the little angels and 
beasts have a pretty history. In early sculptures 
Christ is represented as treading evil beasts under 
foot, and on effigies of bishops of the end of the 
twelfth century the tip of the crosier is often 
thrust into a dragon at the feet of the figure. 
With secular persons lions or dogs usually take the 
place of the dragon, but the meaning is parallel ; 
the knight or lady tramples on the things of this 
life. The angels at the head of the effigies are not 
merely smoothing the pillow of the dying, they 
are there to bear away the soul. In the illumina- 
tion of the death of the Confessor at Cambridge 
(c. 1270) two angels are shown receiving a little 
figure which issues from the king's mouth. At the 
head of Aymer de Valence's image there is a little 
figure supported by two angels ; this was the 
knight's soul. Two sculptured angels wait by 
Aveline's pillow ; but in a painting, once in the 
trefoil of the gable above, they appeared again 

* Crossing the legs of effigies was done from the same practical reasons, 
it gave more substance across the weakest point of the legs above the 



rising with the Aveline of the new life. The 
typical tomb effigy thus suggested the passing of 
the soul, and the putting underfoot of the things of 
this life. St. Louis, when dying, had the Crown 
of Thorns placed at his head and the crown of 
France placed at his feet. 

In 1347 Thomas Chaucombe, le ymaginariusy of 
London, died, and left to his son William all the 
tools of his craft. And in the fatal year, 1349, 
John de MymmSj ymaginour, died and left tenements 
in St. Mildred's, Poultry.* In 1348 John Toft, 
" mason," was carving at St. Stephen's, at 6d. 
a day ; and from 1351 to 1358 William de Padring- 
ton, " mason," was working at St. Stephen's. He 
was paid for stones for an image of St. Stephen, 
and for two images of men-at-arms, and 6s. 8d. 
each for making twenty angels by task-work ; also 
jTi. 6s. 8d. for an image, in stone found by himself, 
of John le Wayte ; also ^^8 for making three kings 
to stand in tabernacles ; and £S for making two 
images of men-at-arms ; and ^^4. 8s. for making 
eleven images for the stalls.-f- In the Archer 
Collection at the British Museum is an excellent 
drawing of a small sculptured head found at 
St. Stephen's, of the very finest type of this middle 

William de Lyndesey, a carver of wooden images, 
of London, was paid in 1 367 for a " table '* (reredos) 
with wooden images for the chapel in Windsor 
Castle; he also received ten marks as a gift, a very 
handsome one.:}: 

• Sharpe's " Cal. of Wills." t J. T. Smith. t Issue Roll. 


The tomb and effigy of Queen Philippa, who 
died in 1369, is wholly of black and white marble, 
„ ,. and the effigy is not in alabaster as often 
f T '\ stated. It resembles Flemish work, and 

•^ *^ ' it has been found that Hawkin Liege of 
France, was paid >C^^33- 6s. 8d. (200 marks) for the 
work in 1 367.* This Hennequin de Liege was a 
famous sculptor, working in Paris in the middle 
of the fourteenth century ; he was a pupil of Jean 
Pepin de Huy. It is said that only one other work 
of his has been preserved, the statue of Blanche of 
France at St. Denis, and he died before it was 
completed. The combination of black and white 
marble was at that time the popular fashion in 
French tombs.-f 

Ten years later railings were put to the tomb, 
and John Orchard, "latoner" (not stonemason as 
usually said, but bronze worker), was paid for 
making six figures of angels for it. 

Scott gives a good account of this tomb. The 
white marble effigy, a portrait evidently, was 
decorated with patterns in gold, coloured glass 
jewels, and with beads on the head-dress. Mr. J. T. 
Irvine " found that the little traceried windows in 
the canopy over the head of the queen had had a 
thick plate of deep blue grass placed behind them 
as a sort of ground." The weepers around the side 
and their canopies had all been broken away where 
exposed, but about 1850 Scott cut into the base of 
Henry V.'s tomb *' and brought to light the whole 
design, including two niche figures, and one exqui- 

* 40 Edward III. Haukino Li^ge de Francia pro factura tombe 
Philippe. t S. Lami, ** Diet. Sculpt. Fran9ai8," 1898. 



site little angel, one of the many which adorned 
the tabernacle work." He also found one of the 
canopies, and other fragments " on the chimney- 
piece of Mr. Cottingham's office." These, with 
some other fragments which were at the Abbey, 
were refixed in position, and Mr. Cundy, the Abbey 
mason, made a restored model of one end with 
figures by Mr. Philip and decorations by Willement.* 
This model is now at South Kensington Museum, 
and it shows the position of the little angel spoken 
of above, which, in another place, Scott says had 
wings of gilt metal. It was afterwards stolen, but 
a cast had been made. What became of the cast ? 
The two weepers found by Scott still remain within 
a protecting grating, one of a lady, with a hawk or 
puppy in her hand, is, I think, uninjured — the 
other has lost its head ; this was broken off^ while 
opening out the work, and was afterwards stolen, 
but a cast had been made from it by Scott, which 
is probably the cast now in a case in the Chapter 
House. If this head were found to fit,and the whole 
were photographed, we should at least have a 
record of two of these figures — they are, of course, 
decaying while exposed to the air but undusted. 
These figures had gilt patterns on their draperies, 
the hair was gilt, the eyes were touched with blue, 
the lips with red.-f 

All the coats of arms once beneath these figures 
are tricked in the Lansdown MS. 874. Sandford's 

• " Recollections," p. 1 64. 

t These figures, now in utter darkness and never seen, should 
probably be removed to a place where they might be protected under 


engraving shows the queen's hands and crown, 
both now broken away. In Coney's etching of 
the chapel the iron railings, which protected the 
tomb towards the ambulatory, appear. They came 
from old St. Paul's, as described in " Gleanings." 
In the Tufton Street Museum is a standard so much 
like these that I think it may be one of them. 

It is evident that the tomb was commissioned 
some years before the queen's death, and was added 
to in Edward's last year. At this time Orchard 
was also paid 20s. for " two images of alabaster, 
placed upon a small marble tomb, for the infant 
son and daughter of the queen." This, it is well 
known, must refer to the tomb of William of 
Windsor and Blanche, in St. Edmund's Chapel ; 
20s. can hardly have paid for them ; it probably 
had reference to incidental expenses. There can 
not be a doubt that these little figures were 
wrought by the same hand which did a similar 
small tomb in York Cathedral. Both are probably 
Nottingham work. 

Before 1368 Peter Macon, of Nottingham, made 
a great alabaster " table " for the High Altar of the 
chapel in Windsor Castle at a cost of ^C^^^- ^^ 
was an elaborate reredos, and was carried in many 
carts to Windsor from Nottingham. In 1376 
Cardinal Langham died. We have seen that Yevele 
the mason was concerned with the erection of 
his tomb. The fine efligy of alabaster is also 
probably Nottingham work. It is decorated with 
inlays of blue glass, and was heightened with paint- 
ing. The coats of arms on the tomb still show 
colour and gilding. English alabaster work became 



very fashionable in the fourteenth century.* In 
1382 some large alabaster images were exported 
from Southampton,-!- and a good deal of later work 
is still to be found in France. 

At Westminster Hall, in 1395-6, Robert Bras- 
ington was sculpturing angels bearing shields, and 
j^ John Wotton and William Hall were 

. " also carving there. In 1398-9 William 

„ ., Cleuddere and John Aldwich were en- 

gaged there. The former sculptured 
four images and some pinnacles. These images 
may be four of the six kings which stood in niches, 
three on each side of the south window ; they are 
shown in Sandford's view of the Hall ; and from 
Carter's detailed etchings we can identify three of 
them with as many large figures now in the Archi- 
tectural Museum, Tufton Street. Of large scale, 
and rough in treatment, they would just suit the 
dim light where they were placed. They are 
finished with a claw tool. The other three seem 
to have been put back in the Hall, where, as far as 
can be seen, two or three look old. 

Henry the Fifth's Chantry is adorned with several 
statues. Above, in the reredos of the chapel of the 
„ r^, Annunciation, are six figures in niches, 
^, ^ * and a seventh, probably Christ as judge, 
•^* is destroyed. Right and left of its 
empty niche are figures which together represent 
the Annunciation. Next to these, again, are two 
kings, the one to the right, Edward the Confessor 

• Stc Archaeological Journal f 1904* t Rymcr. 



with the ring, and the one to the left, St. Edmund. 
The two end figures are the patron saints of 
England and France — St. George, a fine armed 
knight, and St. Denis, carrying his head. At 
the east end of Henry the Seventh's Chapel 
the three central images are Christ with the 
Virgin and Announcing Angel. The pair form- 
ing the Annunciation so closely resembles the 
similar subject in Henry the Fifth's Chantry that 
we may say that one was copied from the other. 
It follows that the central figure was also probably 
copied. On the western face of the chantry are 
also several figures. Above, in the middle, two 
kings holding buildings in their hands, are possibly 
King Sebert, the mythical first founder of the 
Church, and Henry HI.* Below are two bishops 
or mitred abbots (SS. Wulsin and Dunstan ?) On 
the staircases above the doors are two important 
figures, one of whom is a king with his right hand 
raised, and the other is an aged man with a wide 
pilgrim's hat hanging behind his head. These 
must represent the Confessor giving his ring to St. 
John disguised as a pilgrim. Other statues are of 
deacons, one to the right, probably St. Stephen, 
while on the left is a virgin martyr, probably St. 
Catharine. Facing north and south are two 
ecclesiastics, and two pretty little figures, one St. 

None of the later tomb effigies are of special 
mark. That of the Duchess of York in St. Ed- 

* Or Henry III. and Henry V. himself, the latter as the builder of 
the nave of the church 

t For Henry VII.'s Chapel, see p. 229. 


mund's Chapel is the best. If we would see what 
fine sculpture was still being wrought in the 
middle of the fifteenth century we cannot do better 
than examine the tomb of the Duchess of Clarence 
and her two husbands in the south transeptal chapel 
of Canterbury Cathedral. Here, by a refinement, or 
a trick, the white linen kerchief of the lady, and the 
robes of the angels, are finished white with a comb, 
in contrast to the rest of the polished surfaces. 
The alabaster effigies of Sir Giles Daubigny and 
his wife (1507) in the Abbey are not nearly so fine, 
but they were all probably wrought at Nottingham. 
The following alabaster men of Nottingham are 
named from about 1480: Nicholas Godeman 
(1479), Nicholas Hill (1491), Thomas Hill (1496- 
1502), John Lingard (1495), Walter Hylton (1496), 
Richard Starky (1529). 

Fig. 78. — Head in Triforium 




Master William : Master Walter : The Retable : Coronation Chair : 
Tombs : Sedilia : Chapter House : Portrait of Richard II. : Apocalypse 

The earliest London painter I have found named 
is Henry, the painter, who lived about 1190 in 
jiA- . a stone built house belonging to St. 

rrr'n'^ Paul's.* Three painters working for 

Henry HI. about 1240 were Master 
William at St. Swithin's, Winchester (to whom we 
shall return below), Thomas, the painter, of Chert- 
sey, who made images for Windsor in 1241, and 
Master Nigel, painter, working at Winchester 
Castle in 1245. 

Three other painters, of whom the names are 
well-known, are heard of a few years later. These 
are John of St. Omer, Peter of Hispania, and 
William of Florence. The first seems to have 
been a Frenchman, the second a Spaniard, and the 
third an Italian. The gathering together of so many 
painters shows what a culture-centre Westminster 
must have been at this time, and we shall be as 
justified in speaking of the School of Westminster 
as of the School of Siena. 

In 1249 J^'^^ o^ St. Omer was commissioned to 
execute an important piece of work for our church. 
He was then ordered by the king to make a 
lectern for the new Chapter House like one at St. 

• Cal. St. Paul's Documents. 

R 257 

Fio. 79.— Painted Altar-piece of St. Faith's Chapel. 


Alban's, only better if it could be. In the 

Fabric Roll of 1253 ^^ ^^^ ^^^^ ^^ ^^^ ^^^^ ^^^^^ 
engaged at St. Alban's with a carpenter and assis- 
tant.* In 1272 he painted the king's wardrobe, 
and his name occurs so late as 1293. 

Peter of Spain's name also appears in the Roll of 
1253 ^^ engaged on work for the church, and 
at some time before 1272 he painted two " tables" 
for the altar of the Lady Chapel. In 1 260 " Peter, 
the king's painter," received a robe of office. 

William of Florence was engaged at the king's 
castle of Guildford from 1259, and in 1278 he was 
addressed as " keeper of the works and our 

The most famous of these early painters of the 
Westminster School was the other Master William 
named above, who is frequently mentioned in the 
orders and rolls of Henry III., from about 1240 
to 1280. He is called " Master William, a monk 
of Westminster " and " Our beloved Painter." X 

In 1256 he is referred to as Master William, 
lately of Winchester.§ In 1251 the king ordered 
that Master William should paint the newly-built 
cloisters at Windsor with the Apostles. A head of 
a king of remarkable early work still exists there, 
and has been protected by glass ; this we may, 
I think, assign to Master William. 

• Mr. Page is surely in error when he says that over one hundred 
men were engaged on this work. The documents to which he refers are 
concerned with the Westminster churchy and the work at St. Alban's was 
only an item. Archaologta^ Iviii. t Close Rolls. 

X See Walpole, Rokewode, Hudson Turner, and " Gleanings." 
§ He had been made painter of St. Swithin's while it was in the 
King's hands. 



There is in the chapel of St. Faith, at the Abbey, 
an altar-piece evidently painted about 1260-65 as 
its first decoration. (Fig. 79.) On the left, in the 
attitude in which the artist or donor of a work 
was usually represented, is a small figure of a 

kneeling Benedictine monk ; 
this is most probably Master 
William, at once the painter 
and the donor. (Fig. 80.) 
He was paid for work at 
Westminster Palace in 1256, 
and in 1259 John, the king's 
mason, was commanded to 
take " to the house in which 
William, the king's painter, 
works," the Cross of the 
Infirmary of the Abbey.* 

The painting of St. Faith 
is the most remarkable 
early Gothic wall-painting now remaining to us. 
Within a painted niche stands a female figure in 
a swaying attitude, gracefully draped, and more 
than tall. The colour, when it can occasionally he 
seen on a summer afternoon, is beautiful ; her 
mantle of rose-purple is lined with miniver; the face 
is quiet but full of passion, and the hands are well 
drawn. She holds a book and a gridiron, and wears 
a crown, emblems of the rule, trials, and reward 
of faith. Beneath, in small panels (eight-pointed 
interlocking-squares in form), were other paintings ; 
on the central panel the Crucifixion with figures of 
Mary and John. From the praying monk, and 

• Close Rolls, 43 Henry III., M. 12. 

Fig. 80. — Painted figure of 
donor, at side of painting 
Fig. 79 


slanting up towards the saint's figure, is inscribed 
a prayer. The painting, which is done with swift, 
sweeping touches, is in true tempera, and it has 
never received the attention it deserves.* 

Master William was succeeded by an equally 
celebrated artist. Master Walter of Durham, also 
^T^ king's painter to Henry III., who, from 

Ti^ u 1262, decorated the famous Painted 

Chamber of the palace.f He was still 
working for Edward I. at the beginning of the 
fourteenth century. In the accounts for the burial 
of Alianor we find that he painted the tester over 
her tomb in the church about 1292.:}: The paint- 
ing on the basement of the same tomb, of which a 
mere stain still exists, must also be this master's 
work. It showed, in the middle, a closed tomb, with 
a group of mourners at the left, and at the right 
a knight (Edward I ?) kneeling before the Virgin 
and the Holy Child. Without a clue it would be 
impossible now to decipher more than the shadowy 
forms of four figures on the left, but such a clue is 
supplied by a drawing of the knight by Kerrich 
in the British Museum. Dart also described it 
nearly two centuries ago : " There yet appears," he 
says, " a sepulchre, at the foot of which are two 
monks ;§ at the head is a knight, armed, and a 

• Such tempera is entirely different from the coarse distemper work of 
ordinary wall-paintings. Eggs, wine, oil, and varnish are mentioned 
with the colours in accounts for some of Master William's work. L have 
also seen marble dust mentioned, possibly for the grounds. 

t I have given an account of this in the Burlington Magazine, 1905* 

t Arclueolo^a, xxix. 

§ The others were then hidden by a tomb. 



woman with a child in her arms." Kerrich was 
an accurate draughtsman, and his drawing shows 
that the kneeling knight was a beautiful figure ; his 
chain-mail was partly covered by a surcoat with 



Fig. 8i. — Painting on the Tomb of Queen Alianor 

broad green and white vertical stripes crossed by a 
6enc/ of scarlet. On taking a copy of this drawing 
to Westminster I found that the figure could still in 
great measure be traced ; moreover, it was evident 
that the " woman with the child " was seated on a 
low throne, and was the Virgin holding the Christ 
Child towards the knight. This I have found con- 
firmed by another, rougher sketch in the Powell 
Collection in the British Museum, which shows the 
Virgin and Child clearly, with a note appended : 
" What I have here set down I could vouch for per- 
sonally." As Burges pointed out, the group at the 


foot of the tomb was of secular persons. The 
scarlet hood of one, and a row of buttons on the 
sleeve of another, can still be seen. The meaning, 
I think, must be that the king, (in his habit of a 

Fig. 82. — Continuation of the last 

crusader ?) prays to the Virgin for the soul of 
Alianor, while all kinds of people mourned at her 
tomb. A contemporary writer says of her : 
" Anglicorum omnium amatrix." I have made a 
restoration from all the evidence in Figs. 81 and 82. 

The most beautiful thirteenth-century painting 

in England is the Westminster altar retable now 

rp, in the Jerusalem Chamber. It is de- 

n . Lf corated with glass inlays and jewels, 

and is made to resemble a piece or 

enanielled gold- work. From some ornamental 



borders imitated from Cufic writing which occur 
on it, and which are frequently found in French 
work, I had thought that we must suppose that 
this altar-piece was brought from France, but Mr. 
S. C. Cockerell has recently shown that similar 
ornaments are found in the Winchester Bible, 

which is certainly of Eng- 

^iC ^h #fc^Cy ^ h ^^ ^^^^ work, and much earlier 
^ , , . „ than the retable.* If we 

Fic. 83. — " Cufic decoration " 1 • • ^ 

from an English MS. Bible, ^^Ce get OVCr thlS pomt. 

Corpus College, Cambridge there are SO many resemb- 
lances between it and the 
work of Master Walter at the Painted Chamber 
that we may fairly assign it to this master — 
thus, the curious flat bosses of the ceiling were 
similar to the boss-like forms on the retable ; and 
in the Chamber inlays of glass and spandrels of blue 
glass, like those of the retable, were represented. 
On the ceiling, as on the retable, larger brooch- 
shaped bosses alternated with smaller ones, and 
when we are told that the ceiling of the Chamber 
was painted in compartments, I suspect that the 
forms of the interlocking squares of the retable 
were copied there, and it is probable that the 
bosses were set with coloured glass like the retable. 
We may at least say with certainty that the altar- 
piece was known to the master of the Painted 

In the middle panel of the retable stands Christ 
in majesty holding the universe in His hand. 
Right and left are the Virgin and St. John, each 

• A specimen of this kind of cjccoration fron> a book at Cambridge 
is shown in Fig. 83, 


holding a palm branch. Hers must be that which 
was brought to her at the announcement of her 
death, and his that of martyrdom. The small 
intermediate panels contain beautifully executed 
miniatures of the miracles. One of the end panels 
represents St. Peter, the other is destroyed, and 
may have represented the Confessor — or possibly 
St. Paul. The field between the panels which 
contain the paintings is filled with pieces of blue 
glass with branches of vine and oak raised on it in 
gilt gesso. In other places strips of glass are inlaid 
over painting upon gold which results in a close 
imitation of enamel, and the frame is set with 
imitation gems. The background of the central 
tabernacle is a true mosaic of little morsels of glass 
of two colours shaped into octagons and squares. 
Amongst the gesso diapers on the columns there is 
one of lions and eagles set in interlocking squares, 
which is identical with the decoration on the sur- 
coat of Edmund Crouchback's effigy, and this 
supports the theory of the Westminster origin of 
the work. See also Fig. 85. 

From the wardrobe accounts of 1300— i we learn 
that the Coronation Chair was the work of Master 
rpi Walter, the " king's painter '' to Ed- 

^ . ward I. A close examination still shows 

^, . that the whole surface was covered with 

flat gesso gilt upon which patterns 
were embroidered, as it were, by lines of punched 
dots. It was drawn and described by Carter. On 
the " back *' was the seated figure of a king. 

Burges had the fragment of this, which was all that 



remained a generation since, carefully drawn. The 
engraving in " Gleanings " shows that the feet of 
the king rested on a lion. (Fig. 84.) The subject re- 
presented must have been 
Edward I. himself or the 
Confessor. The rest of the 
chair inside and behind 
was patterned with pricked 
diapers and foliage, much 
of which, I find, has sur- 
vived even the last var- 
nishing ; two or three 
more varnishings, however, 
will obliterate it. Inside 
the dexter arm is a diaper 
enclosing animals ; the op- 
posite surface is 
with a beautiful 
of birds amongst 
Hage, " redbreasts, and 
falcons," Carter says. This 
and the diaper were figured 
by Burges, but the pattern 
is much larger than I 
had supposed from his 
woodcut, which is only a fourth or fifth of full 

The four narrow panels outside the sinister arm 
are covered with designs of thorn, ivy, vine, and 
possibly maple, and similar work filled the panels 
behind. The little spandrels between the cusped 

• The full-size drawings prepared for Burges belong to the Societjr 
of Antiquaries. 

oak fo- 

FiG. 84. — Restoration of painting 
on Coronation Chair 


heads of these panels and the tracery of the gable 
behind were evidently filled with inlays of glass. 
Carter fortunately drew one of these, and says : 
" The spandrels were decorated with small sprays 
painted on a metal ground [gold or silver foil] and 
covered with glass, as may 
yet be seen in three or four 
places." And there was 
similar decoration on the 
front face of the gable. 
Early in last century the 
"old crockets and turrets 
at the back were sawn off," 
in preparation for a coro- 
nation.* The lions beneath 
the chair are modern. 

The three remarkable 
tombs on the north side of 

Tombs. *^^ ^'^^^tV 
were probably 

decorated early in the four- 
teenth century. Aveline's 
tomb was entirely covered ^^\ Ss.-Gesso decoration on 

. , .- ,. ,•' . . the Jamb of the tomb of 

With gildmg and pamtmg. Eveline 
(Figs. 85, 86 and 87.) The 

carvings and weepers were gilt, and the image was 
fully painted. There are yet some traces of painting 
on the pillow, being arms set in lozenges, painted 
in transparent lacquer colours over a gold ground, 
giving the effect of translucent enamel, which 
I have not seen elsewhere. The tomb of her 

• Ncale, ii. 304. 




f^ . 


Fig. 86. — Decoration 
of Arch-moulding 

Fig. 87. — Painted decoration on 
vault of Avcline's tomb. From 
l^^etuita Monumenta 



husband, Edmund, was still more splendid, tor 
large use was made of enamel-like patterns painted 
on gold, recessed in little panels, and covered with 
glass. Many of the patterns can still be seen, but 
several years ago only one tiny morsel of glass, half 
an inch big, remained. The 
figure was not only painted, 
but the drapery was diapered 
all over with a delicate pat- 
tern. This effigy and the 
neighbouring one of Aymer, 
have now no shields ; it is 
possible that they were ori- 
ginally separate works of 
enamel like the shield of 
William de Valence. The 
mouldings of the architec- 
tural framework of Edmund's 
tomb were simply covered 
with raised gesso patterns 

and armorial bearings alternating with roses. Dart 
says that the ground of tbe pediment was blue set 
with fleurs-de-lys. The inside of the canopy 
proper was " a sky set with stars/' The mouldings 
and sculptures of the tomb proper were entirely 
gilt ; the hollows and recesses were coloured bright 
red and green. The shields above the weepers 
have the bearings modelled in gesso. (Fig- 88.) 
The outer basement had a painting o^ a row of 
knights holding banners of which a small coloured 
engraving was published by Carter. Stothard's 
original drawings of the tombs are now in the 
British Museum, and amongst them I have found 


Fig. 88.— Small Shield with 
lion in gesso from Crouch- 
back's tomb 


outlines of these figures, accurate as photographs.* 
(Fig. 89.) 

Stothard has published admirable coloured en- 

FiG. 89. — Part of painting from basement of Crouchback's tomb 

gravings ot the effigies of Aveline, Crouchback, 
and Aymer de Valence. Some further particulars 
as to the latter appear in a drawing in the Powell 

• Comparing the heraldic coats as shown by both artists, one or two of 
them can be identified, i is Red with a saltire ; 2, Paly red and white 
with a Bend ; 3, Red with a white Cross ; 4, Cheeky a canton ermine 
(Dreux) ; 5, Blue a Lion rampant gold or silver with a red Bend 
over all ; 6, Cheeky blue and white a red Fess (Clifford) ; 7, Gules a 
Cross pate^ (Albemarle). 


Collection. Not only was the tunic barred with 
blue, but it had the red martlets of Valence ; and 
the pillow was covered with lozenges bearing the 
Valence and Chastillon arms. 

The seats of the priests on the south of the 
presbytery are of wood, but they were decorated 
rpj in harmony with the opposite tombs. 

^ ,y. (Fig- 90-) The trefoils of the gable 

fronts were set with red glass over 
a gold ground ; the spandrels were plated with 
blue glass on silver foil. The mouldings and 
carving were gilt, parts being burnished. The 
hollows were bright scarlet. * The corbel heads 
were set with imitation jewels. In the large 
panels — four within and four facing the ambu- 
latory — there were originally eight large figures. 
The four on the outside represented, as we 
know from early descriptions, Sebert and St. 
Peter, and the Confessor giving his ring to St. 
John.-f- Traces of the figure of the Confessor, with 
his extended hand holding the ring, can still be 
seen, but the others have been destroyed. J On the 

• See AylofFc, in " Vetusta Monumenta," 1780. The original 
drawings for this account, dated 1775, are at the Society of Antiquaries. 

t Dart. 

X A rough engraving of the figure of the Confessor is given by Dart, 
and a better version by Malcolm. At first sight it seems to have dis- 
appeared, but on closer examination the upper part of the figure can be 
made out and traces can be followed down to the feet, which come down to 
the bottom of the panel. The head, with its long white beard, is fine ; 
the hands are gloved ; the left holds a sceptre, the uplifted right the ring ; 
the tunic is green, the mantle (purple, I think) is fur lined. A copy 
could still be made by an expert. 



inside were two kings, an abbot or bishop, and 
another figure now destroyed. The kings are still 
in fair preservation, and are, in every way, remark- 
able works, and most probably represent Henry HI. 
and Edward I., the latter of whom died the year 


Fig. 90. — The Scdilia in 1821. After Harding 

before the sedilia were erected in 1308. These 
figures were very carefully drawn by G. P. Harding 
in 1 82 1. They are about 8 ft. high, and their 
heads and hands are very well drawn. Both have 
their mantles lined with fur and both wear gloves. 
One is an old man, grey bearded, the other younger 
and beardless. The red background to the younger 
king is powdered with little heraldic leopards, 
which proves him to be an English king, and I 

Fig. 91. — Figure from Scdilia. Drawn in 1775. 
Vetusta ^onumenta 



think a then recent one. The other king, to the 
left, bears a type of sceptre, which seems to suggest 
that he was a builder (compare OfFa in Nero D. 5). 
As the other two founders — Sebert and the Con- 
fessor — were painted outside, we may confidently 
call this King Henry HI. (Fig. 9 1 .) The accounts 

Fig. 92. — Painting on Soffitc of arch above Scbcrt's tomb 

of the Painted Chamber in the palace show that 
Master Thomas, son of Walter, the painter, was 
working there with him in 1 307 ; and as Walter 
was now a very old man, we may, with proba- 
bility, give the credit for the sedilia to Master 
Thomas, who appears to have succeeded his father 
as king's painter. 

In an account at the British Museum for work 
at St. Stephen's and " La Blanche Chambre,*' 
Master Thomas of Westminster is called " painter 
to the works.'' * Mr. Page has recently shown that 
a Master Walter, a painter, living in Bowgate, 


• Add. 30263. 


St. Albans, had, as next door neighbour, one 
Thomas, the painter (living in 1290) ; these he 
suggests are Waher and his son who painted at 
Westminster. This Thomas, he says, died early 
in the fourteenth century. This coincidence is 
remarkable and the theory possible.* 

Master William seems to have received as much 
as 2s. a day. Master Walter received is., and his 
son, while working under him as assistant, had 6d. 
Painting stood just on a level with the other arts, 
from masonry to tailoring, but I believe they did 
not then laugh at tailors. 

In the Roll for Works at the Painted Chamber, 
1292-4, the name of Richard de Stokwell appears 
^ , as working under Master Walter, and 

p . receiving 6d. a day.-f- I find him men- 

tioned again in a will of 1338. In this 
year he was one of eight " best men," of his ward 
of Cripplegate, appointed to " patrol the City day 
and night to preserve the King's Peace." | In 
1 349 he died.§ 

In 1274 Master Stephen, the kings painter, 
redecorated Westminster Hall. Towards the end 
of the Xlllth century Abbot John de Northwold, 
of Bury St. Edmund's (1279-1301), "had the 
choir made and painted by the hands of a certain 
monk of his, John Wodecroft, a painter of our 
Lord the King."|| 

John Albon was king's painter to Edward II. in 

• Archaologta^ Iviii. t Rokewodc. 

X Letter Book F. § Sharpc's " Wills." 

II Dr. M. R. James. " The Abbey of St. Edmund." 


1326, when he painted a book of heraldry for the 
king. He seems to have been a persona grata to 
the foolish king, for in this same year "Jak de St. 
Albon^ peyntr le Roi^ danced before the king on a 
table and made him very greatly laugh. 

John, a canon of St. Katherine's by the Tower, 
"the king's picture painter ''(Edward Hi's.), was 
paid in 1354 and 1366 for painting "tables" of 
images for the chapel at Windsor.* 

William Burdon, the painter, and his assistants 
were painting and gilding the Rose Tower at 
Windsor in 1366 at is. a day, and the next year 
William de Burden, " the king's painter," was 
working on a costly " great tablet " for the altar 
in the chapel. -f- This must be the reredos men- 
tioned on another page (p. 253)* 

The paintings next in order are those which 
filled the eastern stalls of the Chapter House, and 
rh hf ^^ which only some fine heads now 

„ ^ remain, and also a record of the 

general composition made when they 
were first discovered about a century ago. The 
paintings belonged to the period when important 
decorations were being painted in St. Stephen's 
Chapel under the direction of Master Hugh of St. 
Albans, king's painter. They are particularly 
interesting in that the heads, which are remarkably 
fine, show distinct Italian influence. The subject 
was Christ as Judge surrounded by adoring angels. 

These paintings were fully described by Mr. 
Waller in 1873. In the centre was Christ seated 

* Issue Roll. t Tighe and Davis. 



on the celestial globe, blue spotted with stars, His 
feet resting on the lesser globe of the earth ; a 
crimson robe was draped about Him, and with 
raised hand He called attention to His wounds. 
Above, four angels' heads appeared over a curtain 
which they lifted behind Christ. Right and left 
were two standing angels in white. The one on 
the proper right held a T cross, nails, and the 
spear — the one on the left, the scourge and reed with 
the sponge. In the compartment on the proper 
right of the centre was a cherubin with six wings, 
with extended hand holding a crown, and another 
object in the other hand from which depended two 
strings, probably a seal. His feet were on the sun, 
or a rayed wheel, which flamed about them. The 
cherubin on the left was similar, but held two 
crowns, and the feathers of his wings were in- 
scribed with the names of beatitudes. The two 
outer bays were filled by rows of adoring angels, 
and similar angels filled up the background of the 
three central bays. These paintings were only 
discovered in 1801. An attempt has been made to 
preserve them, but since " treatment " they have 
almost entirely perished, and we have no copies of 
them except Carter's small sketch which shows the 
general composition. They have been well de- 
scribed by Sir Charles Eastlake, who assigned them 
to the middle of the fourteenth century ; and J. T. 
Smith says that he was persuaded that they were 
executed by the same artists who painted St. 
Stephen's Chapel. A few years ago I was able to 
read parts of the inscriptions on the plumes of the 
wings of the angel on the right — Simplicitas, 



Humilitas, &c. The nimbuses are gilt and pat- 
terned with thick black lines. The mantle of Christ 
was bordered with a pattern in gold and had a clasp 
of gilt gesso. 

We next come to that extraordinary work, 
the portrait of Richard II. now hanging in 
P t 'f f ^^^ presbytery. This picture used, 
ij . , , -^ as we have seen on p. 24, to occupy 
IT fif ^ place at the back of the east stall in the 

southern row. We have just said that 
the kings of the sedilia were probably Henry III. 
and Edward I., and this judgment seems to be 
confirmed by the position in the choir of this 
portrait of Richard II. This painting, and another 
on the tester of his queen's tomb, is referred to in 
the Issue Roll 19 Richard II. thus: "To Master 
Peter, Sacrist of the Church of the Blessed Peter, 
Westminster. In money paid him by the hand of 
John Haxey in discharge of ^20 which the Lord 
King commanded to be paid to him, as well for paint- 
ing the covering of the tomb of Anne, late Queen 
of England, buried within the said church, as for the 
removal of a tomb near the tomb of the said queen ; 
also for painting the said tomb so removed, and for 
the picture of a certain image portrayed in the 
similitude of a king in the choir of the church."* 
The contrefacte of this entry has been translated in 
" Gleanings," " to correspond with another placed 
opposite," but, as Mr. St. John Hope has suggested 
to me, it must be the Latin form of the word con- 

* Pro pictura unius^maginis ad similltudinem unius regis contrefacte 
in choro ecclesix. Issue, Pells, 19 Richard II. 


trefait used of a portrait, and which, as we see on 
p. 290, appears in a contract for the images of 
Richard's tomb. In the album of Villars de Honne- 
court we find a drawing of a lion which the artist 
says was contrefait a vif. 

The most considerable painter I can find named 
as working in London at this time was Herebrecht 
of Cologne, " citizen of London and painter," who, 
in 1398, was engaged in painting a splendid altar- 
piece for St. Paul's, where he was still engaged in 
1403.* It is possible that he was the painter of 
the portrait. It is a magnificent work in design, 
execution, and deep, full colour. It was painted 
on a patterned background of raised and gilt gesso- 
work, which unfortunately was restored away when 
the picture was cleaned by experts. It must be 
the finest fourteenth-century portrait existing in 
Europe. Fortunately there is preserved at the 
South Kensington Art Library a photograph of 
this precious work before the decorated background 
was removed.-f- (See note on p. 283.) 

The canopy over the tomb of Richard has also a 
background of gilt gesso-work, and there can hardly 
be a doubt that it is by the same hand. The sub- 
jects are Christ in Majesty, the Coronation of the 
Virgin, and two pairs of angels supporting shields 
of arms. It is in every way a remarkable work. 
(Figs. 93 and 94.) 

On the blank wall in the south triforium, by 
the muniment room, is a large, rough, distemper 
painting of the badge of Richard II., a white hart, 
now much defaced. 

^ CaK St. Paal's Documents, f Mr. E. F. Strange showed me this. 



An account is preserved at the Abbey for the 
making of Abbot Littlington's great missal, a 

Fig. 93. — One-half of Canopy over tomb of Richard II. 

beautiful illuminated book now exhibited in the 
Chapter House, Thomas Preston received ^4, 



and 20S. worth of cloth for two years' labour in 
writing the missal. The large illuminated letters 

Fig. 94. — Other half of Canopy over lomh of Richard II. 

cost no less than jC^^j ^^^ whole cost being 
^34 14s. 7d. It was completed in 1384. 



Several works painted in the church, at the end 
of the fourteenth century and later, are named 
in a document given in the Appendix of Stanley's 
" Memorials."* 

Brother John of Northampton in the time of 
Edward IV., caused the series from the Apocalypse, 
. still existing in the Chapter House, to 

/ ^ c ' be painted. These paintings are ar- 
•^^ * ranged in bands in the wall-arcade with 

great decorative skill, and the general colour is quite 
beautiful. The inscribed labels between the pictures 
are written on paper andt stuck to the wall. The 
series shows us St. John in Patmos and prostrate 
before the vision of the Majesty. We see him 
writing his messages to the churches, which are 
represented as seven buildings. An angel stands in 
the door of each one. Christ is represented between 
the golden candlesticks, a sword in His mouth, and 
the Elders cast down their crowns. The heads of 
the arches contain pretty half figures of angels : at 
the bottom of each panel animals were painted, such 
as the dromedary, camel, and reindeer ; this last 
has faded very much, or has been washed out since 
I made a sketch from it ten or twelve years ago. 
According to Mr. Waller's paper on these paint- 
ings,*!* animals were formerly visible inscribed: 
reynder, ro, wild ass, tame ass, dromedary, kameyl, 
lyon ; and on the riser of the top step were 
creatures of the sea. 

Some still later paintings, which once decorated 

• Third Edition. 

t London and Middlesex Archaeological Society, 1873. 


IsHp's Chapel, are shown on the Roll on which the 
ceremonies of his burial are depicted. In the upper 
chapel was a large Crucifixion with the Doom 
above. According to Weever : " In the Chapel of 
St. Erasmus" (so he calls it), "where he (IsHp) 
lieth buried, upon the wall over his tomb, was the 
picture of Christ on the Cross seeming to give 
counsel to mankind " (in Latin verses which are 

" Under was the picture of the Abbot " praying 
thus in old poetry : 

En cruce qui pendis Islip miserere Johannis 
Sanguine perfuso reparasti quern pretioso. 

•Weever, "from old MS." 

Note. — Some years ago Mr. S. C. Cockerell mentioned to me that 
he thought that the Portrait of Richard II. might be by Andrien 
Beauneven, of Valenciennes, painter to Charles V., who Froissart said 
painted in England as well as in France. Some drawings, which Mr. 
Roger Fry has recently shown are probably from his hand, are so like 
the portrait in style that I am now prepared to accept Mr. Cockerell's 

I have spoken on p. 276 of Italian influence in paintings executed 
by, or in the time of. Master Hugh. Now in French inventories of 
this time paintings of Lombardy are mentioned as precious things, and 
I find in the will of our master, "Hugh Payntour," that in 1361 he left 
a splendid North Italian painting (unam tabulam de VII pcces de 
Lumbardy) which had cost him X^^* (Sharpe's ; Wills.) 



Bronze Founders : Goldsmiths : Blacksmiths : Plumbers and other 
Craftsmen : Glaziers. 

The bronze effigies of Henry III. and AHanor of 
Castile, which lie on their tombs on the north side 
r. of the Confessor's Chapel, are the most 

/^ , beautiful Gothic sculptures in the church 

^ ' or in England ; indeed, of the effigy ol 

Alianor especially, it may be questioned from the 
mere concurrence of three accidents — the sub- 
ject, a beautiful queen ; the moment, the very 
apogee of Gothic art ; and the noble material, gilt 
bronze — whether all Europe can show such another. 

The figures were both being made in 1291 by 
Master William Torel, goldsmith of London.* From 
an entry in the Close Roll of this year we can tell 
the very day when the model was approved and 
the casting ordered for the statue of the king.-f- 
There were two other similar images of the queen 
placed at Blackfriars and at Lincoln, and Torel 
seems to have received jC"3 6s. 8d. for the 

Wykes has recorded how Henry HL was first 
buried in the old tomb of the Confessor. His body 

•" Gleanings," p. 148. It is possible that the queen's effigy was 
begun during her lifetime. IM, p. 1 54. 

t Order to deliver to William Torel, the maker of the laton effigy 
(imaginls . . , de latum) of the late king, the necessaries for making it. 
And to pay William Sprot and John de Ware, for obtaining the 
metal required. Cal. Close Rolls. 


was probably translated into the new tomb in 1292, 
as in that year his heart was given to the Abbey of 
Fontevrault. Some years ago, when the back of 
the bronze plate on which the figure of the king lies 

Fig. 95. — Part of Bronze Effigy of Henry III. 
From Vetusta Monumenta 

was examined, three small figures were found 
scratched on the metal with the graver ; slight, yet 
done with a master's power. (Fig. 96.) On the 
right was a veiled queen, and a smaller figure of 
a nun, their hands uplifted in entreaty, and ap- 
proaching a single figure on the left, incomplete 



but dignified. This queen, it seems to me, must 
be Henry's widow, Eleanor of Provence, with 
one of her nuns of Amesbury, praying to the 
Virgin. (Fig. 96.) The queen did not die 
until June 1291. She had taken the veil (in 

Fig. 96. — Figures engraved beneath Effigy of Henry III. 

1284) at the same time as Mary, a daughter 
of Edward I., who we may suppose to be repre- 
sented with her grandmother. I have found a 
reference to Master William Torel twelve years 
later than when he was engaged on the efiigies. 
In 1303 the king's treasury at Westminster having 
been robbed, an inquiry was instituted by several 

juries, on one of which served William Torel, who 


gave evidence that he had purchased of the accused, 
Richard Podlicote, two ruby rings.* 

Over the head of the Queen's effigy is a canopy 
from which two pinnacles have been broken off, and 
from marks on the " table " 
it is evident that there were 
once small side-shafts, from 
which the arch of the canopy 
seemed to spring. A seal of 
Alianor is so much like her 
tomb in the design of the 
figure, the shields hung on a 
tree, and other points, that I 
cannot doubt that it is also 
the work of Torel. (Fig. 97.) 
In any case, we may say with 
certainty that the design of 
the effigy was influenced by 
the seal. In both the right 
hand of the queen holds a 
sceptre, the left the mantle 

strap ; in both castles and lions are set on the field, 
and there is much resemblance between the 

In the monumental inscription which surrounds 
the effigy there used to be a lacuna caused by the 
angle of Henry V.'s chantry which covers it. 

• The final verdict of the aldermen of London on this great case 
was that the sacristan and two monks contrived the burglary. That 
John Albon, '' mazun/' his man, and Podlicote broke into the treasury. 
The last was found, "seized " with coronets, cups, &c., of the value of 
j^2200. The sacristan had a bowl of " unknown value." William 
Torel, Thomas dc Frowick, and others bought objects in good faith. 
Letter Book C. 


Fig. 97. — Seal of Queen 


Some years ago enough of this was cut away to 
reveal the hidden portion, of which a plaster cast 
was taken and placed in the Chapter House. The 
whole reads : 


Around the hems of her tunic and mantle, and 

Fic. 98. — Part of inscription from tomb of Henry III. 

on the strap ot the latter, are small cavities which, 
it is thought, must have been filled with gems, and 
this is confirmed by an account for an earlier silver 
statue of the Princess Katharine, which has dis- 
appeared, for which precious stones were provided.* 
The bronze statue of Edward III. is next in time. 

• These effigies are probably the earliest ever cast in England. We 
may note that they were the work of a goldsmith, not a bronze founder. 
There is an earlier reference to two bronze lions in 1245, when 
Henry III. ordered Edward, his clerk, who had said that such would be 
only a little more costly than marble to have two brass leopards made 
to be placed on each side of the king's seat in the palace. In the 
fourteenth century the bronze founders formed an important craft. In 
1347 Roger le latoner is mentioned, and in 1365 John de Lincoln 
and Robert in the Lane, founders, were sworn " to survey the mistery " 
Letter Book E. 


The king died in 1 377, and we have seen that in 
this year John Orchard, "latoner" (bronze-worker), 
provided some little figures for Queen Philippa's 
tomb. From the form of the accounts it is clear 
that he was at this time in the royal service, and, as 
the handsome effigy of the Black Prince (d, 1 376), at 
Canterbury, must have been in hand at this moment, 
it is probably the work of Orchard. I'hat his effigy 
should be of 'Maton" is directed in the prince's 
will of 1 376. The effigy of Edward III. may also be 
Orchard's work ; certainly the enamelled shields of 
both tombs are by the same artist. Edward III.'s 
effigy is inferior to that of his son, but that may 
be only in consequence of its being less costly. I 
find that in 1377 John Orchard and Richard Rook, 
of Knightsbridge, acquired a house and garden 
in Tothill Street, close to the Abbey gates, doubt- 
less so as to be near work going on in the palace 
workshops.* The effigy of Edward III. is acknow- 
ledged by all to be a portrait. The bronze weepers 
which remain on the south side are also obviously 
likenesses. Those of the north side are lost, but 
the Lansdowne MS., 874, gives the arms of the 
enamelled shields which were once beneath them. 
Pretty little angels on the margin of the " table,'' 
on which the figure rests, should not escape notice. 
The figures of angels supplied for the queen's 
tomb may have been from the same mould. 

The next bronze effigies which were placed in 
the church are those of Richard II. and Anne, his 
queen. The queen died in 1394, and was buried 
*' on the feast of St. Anne next following with 

• Bentlcy's Cartulary. 

T 289 


great honour and solemnity." Twenty pounds' 
worth of black cloth was bought abroad, which 
was probably used for hangings.* The temporary 
" herce '* was covered with " gold cloths/' which 
were sold afterwards for no less than ^^66 1 3s. 4d. 
The king soon set about erecting a costly tomb 
for her and for himself. We learn from a document 
extracted in Bentley's Cartulary that Nicholas and 
Godfrey, of Wood Street, began to make the 
'' mould and imagines" in 1394. In 1395 a con- 
tract was signed with Nicholas Broker and Godfrey 
Prest, citizens and coppersmiths of London, for 
two gilt images crowned and clasping their right 
hands together and holding sceptres with their left 
hands. One contrefait le corps of the king and 
the other of the queen. The *' table " on which 
they were to be placed was to be fretted with 
fleurs-de-lys, lions, eagles, and leopards. There 
were to be tabernacles, called " hovels" or "gablitz,'* 
over the heads of the images, and two lions at the 
feet of the king, with an eagle and leopard at the 
feet of the queen. Also there should be twelve 
images of gilt metal of saints such as should be 
named by the king, and eight angels around the 
tomb. Also engraved " escriptures " and enamelled 
shields of arms. All should be performed in two 
years according to a " patron" which Nicholas and 
Godfrey had shown, and the king should pay them 
j^40o -f (say, jCs^^^). The eight angels spoken of 

• Roger Elys, chandler, supplied a great store of candles. 

t See Neale. There is a minutely accurate half full-sized drawing 
of the statues by Mollis now at the Deanery. And good electrotypes of 
all the bronze images are at the National Portrait Gallery. 


must have been on the '* table " in two strips of 
tabernacle work like the angels of Edward III/s 
tomb. Their engraved nimbuses may still be seen. 
The eagle at the foot of the queen is shown by 
Sandford. The garments of the king and queen 
are covered with minute engraved patterns and the 
letters R. and A. Precious stones were set down 
the centre of the queen's bodice and there is a very 
pretty brooch on her left shoulder. 

In Dr. Sharpens Calendar we have the will of 
Nicholas Broker, coppersmith, who died in 1426. 
Another bronze effigy-maker of this time was 
William Godezer, coppersmith, of London, who, 
in 141 2, was paid for an image of the queen's 
mother placed over her tomb in the King s College 
at Leicester.* 

In 1454 an agreement was made for the splendid 
bronze effigy of Richard Beauchamp at Warwick 
with London artists. William Austen, founder, was 
to provide the bronze images according to patterns, 
Thomas Stevens, coppersmith, executed the plate 
(and probably the patterns), and Bartholomew Lamb- 
spring, Dutchman, goldsmith, did the polishing, 
the gilding, and the enamelled escutcheons ; John 
Essex, marbler, wrought the slab, and the rest of 
the tomb was by John Bourde, of Corfe, marbeler,*!- 
who engaged to supply marble " as well coloured as 
any in England/' and all according to a " portraic- 

* Issue Roll. All bronze images in England, we may conclude* 
were London work. We hear of another at the Greyfriars at Stamford, 
"a goodly image of copper-gilt laid upon marble," of Dame Blanche of 
Lancaster : " It is very beautiful." Sec Gtsquet, vol. i. p. 464. 

t Dugdale's " Warwick." 



ture " delivered to him — probably by Essex. We 
have before met with Stevens and Essex about 
1448 (see p. 209). Stevens lived in Gutter Lane 
and seems to have left descendants in the business, 
for, in 1 49 1, John Stevens, coppersmith, was paid 
for making a gilt helmet and target for the installa- 
tion of a Knight of the Garter.* 

One other mediaeval bronze figure in the church 
has not yet been mentioned. This is the remark- 
able enamelled effigy of William de Valence (d. 1296). 
Burges showed that it was probably of Limoges 
work. It is not cast, but is of sheet metal, beaten up 
and attached to a wood core. There is now in the 
mediaeval room of the Louvre an effigy of similar 
workmanship and age, but without any enamels 
remaining on it. This is the statue of Blanche of 
Champagne (d. 1283) executed at Limoges. The 
thin bronze sheeting over the wood model is 
applied in many pieces ; the face and wimple is 
in one, the pillow, which has sunk patterns for 
enamel, is in two. It is so much like the West- 
minster effigy that both probably came from one 
workshop. In the Wallace Collection are some 
small images attached to enamelled plates ; similar 
figures were once fixed to the sides of the Valence, 
tomb. Several small enamelled coats of arms, which 
were placed under these weepers, remain ; a record of 
others, which have disappeared, is given in Lans- 
downe MS. 874. I cannot think that this splendid 
tomb of the half-brother of Henry III. can 
originally have been situated anywhere else than 

• The bronze work of Henry VII.'s Chapel is considered iq 
Chapter XI. 


in the Confessor's chapel near the tombs of his 
children. It may have given place to the tomb of 
Philippa or that of Edward III. 

The goldsmith's craft was the best regarded and 
best rewarded of the Middle Ages. A large pro- 
p . , portion of the Lord Mayors of London 

'th were goldsmiths. Most of them seem 

to have dealt in money, and the richest 
were the bankers of the time. In Domesday we 
hear of the goldsmith to Edward the Confessor, one 
Teodric, who held Kennington ; and from this 
time onwards records of goldsmiths are so numerous 
that it will be impossible to deal with them here. 
I must limit myself to some account of the golden 
shrine, the great treasure and palladium of the 
church, and to the goldsmiths of the time when 
it was made. Under the year 1241 Matthew 
Paris says that the king caused a shrine of pure 
gold and precious jewels to be made. Burges cites 
an account which shows that the wooden shrine or 
basis for the gold was supplied in this year, and jC^sS 
was spent in " the work of St. Edward's shrine." 
In 1244 an image of the Virgin, with an emerald 
and ruby, was given by the queen. In 1245 
Edward, the clerk, was ordered to go to Wood- 
stock to show the king the image of the Confessor, 
probably for one of the pillars by the shrine. In 1 25 1 
a cameo was to be sought for the shrine. In 1255 
a precious jewel, worth 60 or 100 marks, was to be 
bought, and in 1 260 other precious stones were set in 
it. The designer of this golden coffin may have been 
Odo the goldsmith, so frequently mentioned from 



c. 1226,* Henry III. 's favourite man of business. Or 
it may have been Edward, his son, or perhaps, most 
probably, Richard Abel. Later we know with 
certainty that the work was in the hands of William 
of Gloucester, who, in 1256, was called "king's 
goldsmith," and in 1257 ^^^ P^^ ^^ charge of the 
Mint at wages of 2s. a day for self and clerks. Odo, 
I think, died about the time the shrine was begun, 
as in 1239 his son, Edward, was associated with 
him, and later Edward's name alone occurs. 
Edward was " keeper of the shrine " from its com- 
mencement, but he is styled " the king's beloved 
clerk," and I cannot say if he practised his father's 
art. I am inclined to think not, for in 1243 
Richard Abel, goldsmith, was appointed master at 
the Mint, possibly in succession to Odo ; the year 
before he was paid j^i2 for gold clasps.-f- 

In 1256 a mandate was issued to William of 
Gloucester to take all the money he could get out 
of the King's Jewry to buy gold for the king, and 
it seems likely that this was for the shrine. 

In 1269 the work was so far completed that it 
then received the body of the saint, but the king 
went on adding to it till death stayed his hand. 

An account of the last year of Henry III. (1272) 
has been printed in " Gleanings,".|. in which the 
executors of William of Gloucester set out the 
amounts of money received in connection with the 
frontal, a silver image for the tomb of the Princess 
Katharine, and the work on the '' feretrum " of 
St. Edward. It is retrospective, going back to 
1256, and such large sums are involved that it is 

•Issue Roll \ IbU. tP. 113. 



no wonder to find that auditors were appointed by 
patent (i Edward I.) to hold an enquiry as to " the 
great sums of money '* expended on the frontal, 
the image, and the shrine, as shown in the account 
of the late William of Gloucester. 

From a list of precious images and jewels belong- 
ing to the work drawn up in 1267, and printed in 
"Gleanings,"* we get the best idea of the shrine. 
The gold images were : i. Of St. Edmund, king, 
with a crown, having two great sapphires, &c., 
and worth ^^86 ; 2. A king, with a ruby on his 
breast, ^48 ; 3. A king, with a flower in his hand, 
and a great garnet on his breast and other stones 
and pearls, ^^56 ; 4. A king, similar, £s^ i 5- ^ 
king, with a sapphire on his breast, >C59 J 6- ^^^^ 
angels of gold, ^^30 ; 7. The Blessed Virgin and 
her Son, set with rubies, emeralds, sapphires, and 
garnets, >C^oo 5 8. An image of a king, holding a 
feretrum, set with precious stones, in his hand, and 
having an enamelled and jewelled crown, jC^03 ; 
9. A king, holding a cameo in one hand and a 
sceptre in the other, ^100 ; lo. An image of 
St. Peter, holding a church in one hand and keys 
in the other, trampling on Nero, who had a big 
sapphire on his breast, ^^ 1 00 ; 11. A Majesty, 
j^20o ; 12. Many great jewels and cameos. 

The general form of the shrine must have re- 
sembled that shown in the Cambridge " Life of the 
Confessor,'' figured by Scott, who assigns it the date 
of 1245, ^"^ ^^ ^s> ^ think, much nearer the style of 
1270, and may have been written at the time of 
the translation, 1269. Although it refers to the 

♦ P. 141. 



earlier shrine it probably represents the work of 
Henry HI.* A symbol rather than an illustration 
of the shrine from the margin of the British 
Museum copy of Matthew Paris is shown in Fig. 4. 
The Majesty and the Virgin would have occupied 
the gabled ends and the images of kings the sides. 

One of the kings we are told was St. Edmund, 
and we may be sure that the rest, as would be 
most appropriate, were English sainted kings, with 
the exception of the most costly one, that holding 
the model of the shrine itself, which must have 
been Henry HI. St. Peter trampling on Nero 
appeared as the patron of the church. In an 
interesting contemporary account of how the 
citizens of London were treated by the king on 
the occasion of the translation in 1269, the shrine 
is described as "a basilica^ adorned with purest 
gold and precious stones. "-f- It must have been of 
quite unbelievable splendour, and if we take into 
account the valuation in 1267 of jC^SSS for the 
images alone, and consider the time it was in pro- 
gress, we may venture to say that it could not have 
cost less than ^^60,000 or ;^8o,ooo of our money. 

We have seen that the bronze effigy of Henry III. 
was made by William Torel about 1291. Other 
celebrated goldsmiths of the time were Master 
Adam, William de Farringdon, Thos. de Frowick, 
and Gregory Rokesley. In the accounts for the 
burial of Queen Alianor the name of Master 

• Even if the earlier date could be proved to be right, the new 
shrine was already well advanced in 1245. Seeing how the miniature 
agrees with the description, we may accept it as a picture of it. 

t Liber de Ant. Legibus. 


Adam, the queen's goldsmith, occurs, as having 
made a golden angel to hold her heart for the church 
of the Blackfriars. The design of the present 
Coronation Chair seems to be traceable to the same 
Adam. The account of the year 1300 for the 
chair is headed Account of Adam, the King's Gold- 
smith ; from it it appears that the chair was intended 
to be cast in bronze, but this was given up, and a 
chair of wood was made similar to it, costing iocs. 

Before this time Adam was working with Wil- 
liam de Farringdon on the gold shrine of St. Thomas 
at Canterbury, An account of 1284* shows that 
" Dom, William de Farndon " was then remaking 
the shrine, apparently at the cost of Edward I. ; 
13 lbs. of gold was supplied for three images of 
St. Edward, the Pilgrim, and St. George on his 
horse.-f- Gold for covering the feretrum and divers 
pinnacles are mentioned, also precious stones and 
crystal. The pinnacles were the work of "Ade 
Aurifaber." William de Farringdon is called king's 
goldsmith in 1285; he probably succeeded William 
de Gloucester, and Adam probably followed him 
in the office. 

William de Farringdon died in 1293. J ^^ ^^^ 
alderman of the City Ward, to which he gave his 
name. It must be as a " Baron " of London that 
he was styled as above. The Wardrobe Rolls at 
the Record Office contain accounts of Adam, 
the king's goldsmith, for some plate bought by 
him in Paris for Edward I. in 1298.§ There are 

• Wardrobe, 372, 11, at Record Office. 

t The two national saints so early ! 

X Sharpe's "Wills." § Exch. Ward, 355, 23 and 24. 



also two accounts for objects supplied by him in 

1296 and 1300. 
The former of these* gives a very long list of 

romantic works, including a gold crown, a circle of 

gold " a fines emer- 
auds,** and several 
"chapeaux** of 
gold, some of which 
were " amaylles de 
clar color " (these 
were the fashion- 
able garlands of the 
time). Also " une 
cloche de argent " 
and " une nascele a 

Gregory Rokes- 
ley was chief assay 
master, M.P. in 

1 284, Lord Mayor several times. He lived in Milk 

Street — "at a rent of 20s. a year ; such were the rents 

of those times," says Stow — and he died in 1291..'}: 
Thos. de Frowick was warden of the Goldsmiths 

and Alderman in 1279. He made a golden crown 

for Margaret, the second queen of Edward L, and 

her beautiful seal may be his work.§ 

Walter de Croxon, goldsmith, in 1237 made the 

Exchequer Seal of Henry HL 

• Middlesex Chancery, 15, 16. 

t Compare an account of Master Adam's given in Miss Strickland's 
Life of Alianor in her " Queens of England." 

t See his Will, in Sharpens Calendar. 

§ See Fig. 316 in " Bouteirs Heraldry," small edition. 

Fig. 99.— Seal of Henry III. 


The glazing was going forward at the church as 
early as 1253. In this year's accounts we find that 
^, white and coloured glass was issued 

from the stores for certain windows 
which were to be done by task-work. White 
work was to be done at 4d. a foot, coloured at 
8d. Some of this glass was purchased from 
Lawrence, glazier, and Richard Borser.* 

In the triforium of the church are three or four 
large pieces of " grisaille glass " set with morsels of 
bright blue, red, and yellow. (Figs. 100 and 
1 01.) Twenty years ago they were nearly intact, 
they were removed from the most eastern window 
of St. Nicholas' Chapel, and Mr. Wright told me, 
I believe, that other fragments are still in place. 
It would be just these windows that were put 
in hand in 1253, ^"^ these fragments are enough 
to give us a clue to the first scheme of glazing. 
The completion of the glazing for the work of 
Henry III. is probably recorded in 1290, when 
^^64 (say j^i20o) was paid to "John of Bristol, 
king's glazier, for making glass windows in the 
church ofWestminster."t Thewindows in question 
were probably those in the clerestory of the choir. 
In the present East windows, where many diverse 
fragments have been gathered together, there are 
some white quarrys, each decorated with a vine 
leaf of about this date. Also some early coats 
of arms. (Figs. 103 and 104.) A MS. in the 
British Museum, by William Fox, 1744, contains a 
description of these arms and the windows 

* In 1242 one Edward was the master glazier at Windsor. 
t Arch€eologiay xxix. 



generally. One of the coats is of Provence, or ^ four 
pales gules^ and he explains that, " the glass being 

Fig. ioo. — Ancient glazing of Apsidal Chapels 

broken, what looks like a fess is because it is not 
replaced again properly." In the Powell Collection 
{c. 1810) is a drawing of the arms in the first light 

pn the right, which shows that it was the crowned 



lion of Cornwall with the bezanty bordure, but it 
was placed in the window in a reversed way. 
These coats of Henry III/s wife and brother can 
only belong to the early work. In the MS. 
Lansdowne, 874, is given a series of thirteen early 

Fig. 1 01.— Ancient glazing of Apsidal Chapels 

coats which must have come from the glazing. 
They are Castile and Leon, England, Ponthieu, 
Edward the Confessor, England with label of five 
points and Heurs de lys, Provence, Castile and Leon, 
Ponthieu, Clare, De Lacy Earl of Lincoln, Ger- 
many, Cornwall, England. Now Sandford says, 
that the arms of Henry III. "are yet standing 
in several windows in the Abbey*' ; and of the coat 
of Castile and Leon, he says, " I have seen those 
arms in the window in the west side of the north 
cross.'' These arms were probably set on the 



grisaille glass at the bottom of the lights of the 
ground floor. Dart mentions the arms of England, 
Provence, and Leon and Castile in this situation, 

and we know that the 
windows in Salisbury 
Chapter House, which is 
practically a copy of West- 
minster Chapter House, 
followed such a scheme. 
We must suppose that the 
East windows and Roses 
of the transepts, at least, 
would have had pictured 
glass of the highest scale 
of colour — sapphire, ruby, 
and emerald. The fine 
early panels in Jerusalem 
Chamber may come from 
the church. 

Hollar's large view of 
the interior shows three 
tiers of three small figures 
in each light, eighteen 
figures in all, filling the East windows, and this 
may represent the original. He could hardly 
have invented anything so accurately in style. 
Hollar also shows the windows divided up with 
two vertical irons as well as by the horizontal bars. 
This is found in some unaltered windows in the 
nave, and may be the original form. 

At the palace in 1307 Master William de 
Horkyle was the glazier. The glazing of St. 

Stephen's Chapel was undertaken in 1352 by John 

Fig. 102. — Border of last 

Fig. 103. — Giat-of- 
Arms of Earl of 
Cornwall. From 
east window 


de Chester, John Athlard, John Lincoln, Hugh 

Lichfield, Symon de Lynne, and John Linton ; all 

masters, drawing and painting on " white tables " 

(cartoons) for is. a day. Eleven 

others were painting the glass at 

7d. a day ; and fourteen were 

breaking and jointing the glass 

at 6d.* 

The windows of the nave of the 

church seem to have been filled by 

Richard II. and later benefactors 

with single figures to each light. 

Hatton (1708) says: "The win- 
dows were doubtless well adorned 

with stained glass painted with 

various portraits, of which there yet remain such at 

the east and west ends, and many on the south side in the 
upper range ^ westward from the 
cross roof and in the south-west 
window below is the portrait of 
Edward the Confessor." The 
windows of the nave were " finely 
painted but now ruined." The 
story of the Confessor giving the 
ring to the pilgrim filled the 

Fig. 104. — A fragment . ^j r ^t. ^l • 1 

from east windows window of the south aisk next 
to that above the west door to 
cloister, with a legend beneath. -f- 

Another of the south windows contained a 

• See accounts printed by J. T. Smith. 

t Rex cui nil aliud presto fuit accipe dixit 
Annulum et ex digito detrahit ille suo. 

Dart : the legend quoted firom Caxton. 



picture ('* portraiture," says Sandford) of Richard IL 
with his badge, a white hart couchant, gorged 
with a coronet and chained under a tree. 

The present pleasant-looking old windows at 
the east end have as a basis large fifteenth-century 
figures, one of which is certainly the Confessor, 
for the uplifted hand with ring still exists. This is 
in the left light of the centre window, and the com- 
panion light must be the pilgrim. These windows 
arc a patchwork of old and semi-modern glass, 
but quite interesting. Some of these late windows 
may have been the work of William Burgh, glazier, 
who filled the great window of Westminster 
Hall with "flourished glass*' in the last year of 
Richard IL 1399. John Pruddle, or Prudde, of 
Westminster, was another famous glazier, who is 
named in the Eton accounts in 1445-6 as chief 
glazier to the king. About 1450 Prudde glazed 
the Beauchamp Chapel at Warwick.* About the 
same time he supplied glass for Greenwich Palace 
" flourished with marguerites, hawthorn buds, and 
daisies," the flowers of Henry VI. and his queen.-f- 

In 1433 (19 Henry VI.) John Prudde was ap- 
pointed to "the ofliice of glazier of our works,*' to 
hold it, " as Roger Gloucestre," had held it, " with a 
shed called the glazier s lodge, standing upon the 
west side within our palace of Westminster." :|: 
This is a particularly interesting notice of the palace 
workshops, another of which, "the Plumbery," I 
have found mentioned. 

• Dugdale. t Hastcad's Hist. Kent. 

t " Domestic Architecture in the Middle Ages," I. p. 'jd. 




Henry, the smith, is mentioned in the Roll of 
1253- In the palace account for 1259 Master 
n ' , Henry Lewis, smith, appears, receiving 

the large remuneration of 3s. a week. 
The smith, indeed, seems to have been better paid 
than other craftsmen. Henry de Lewis died in 
1 29 1, and left to his wife and daughters houses in 
London and Lewis.* He was work- 
ing up to the end, for in 1290 he 
was paid for ironwork to the tomb of 
Henry IILf 

The only specimens of the iron- 
work of this tomb which now exist 
are some pretty little leaf-shaped 
cramps which fix the porphyry slabs. 
I would suggest that the beautiful 
early ironwork on the door in S. ^'^- ^os.— Name 
George^s Chapel, Windsor, may also '^'^X'^w^^^ 
be his work. The chapel was begun 
c. 1 240. I have found stamped here and there on 
the ornaments the name Gilebertus. (Fig. 105.) 
Now a Gilbert de Tile, bailiff of Windsor, was in 
1256 ordered to pay five marks to William, the 
painter, who was decorating the chapel, and it 
seems possible that this door was a present from 
the bailifl?*, who at this time may have been keeper 
of the works. 

The beautiful iron grate to the tomb of Queen 
Alianor, which is of similar work but later in 
style, was the work of Thomas de Leighton, who 
in 1294 received for it j^i2, and 20s. extra for its 
carriage and for his own and assistants' time while 

• Sharpc's " Calendar of Wills." t '' Gleanings," p. 148. 

u 305 


in London fixing it. It has been pointed out that 
the ironwork on the west door of Leighton Buzzard 
Church is similar.* 

In the first year of Edward II. (1307) a grant 
was made to Master James de Lewesham, the king's 
smith, of 8d. a day for his wages so long as he 
shall remain "in office.'' i^ We find him in the 
accounts of this time engaged at the Tower and 
the palace. In 1316 David at Hope was king's 
smith at Westminster.^. In 1326 I find John Cole, 
Fevre le Roy^ mentioned (Stow MSS. 559). Master 
Walter Bury, smith, working at the palace in the 
years 1331-37, was in 1338 appointed as chief 
smith and chief surveyor for all the king's works : 
he was to receive in his office a robe such as 
befitted his estate yearly and I2d. daily for his 
wages.§ Master Andrew was the next smith ot 
whom we have record ; he was working at the 
palace in 1352. In 1362 Andrew, the king's 
smith at the Tower, died. He seems to have lived 
in Old Jewry.y In 137 1 Peter Bromley, late black- 
smith (retired), was granted iocs, yearly for his 
good services.^ The most important piece of 
ironwork at the Abbey of a later date is the grate of 
Henry V.'s tomb, and the finest example in England 
is the tomb screen of Edward IV. at Windsor. We 
have seen that the former was the work of Roger 
Johnson of London, smith, who, in 1431, was 
ordered to arrest (press) smiths to complete the 
ironwork of the tomb of the late king.** 


• " Gleanings," p. 90. 

t Issue Roll. t /^/V. § Patents. 

II Sharpens " Calendar of Wills." IF Issue RoU. •• Rymer, 


The Windsor screen is rather locksmith's than 
blacksmith's work. The general design seems to 
be an adaptation of the stone front of Henry V.'s 
chantry at Westminster. The bronze grille of 
Henry VH.'s tomb was in turn influenced by the 
Windsor ironwork. In the Lansdown MS. 874 
{c. 1 610) I find a sketch of the Windsor screen 
with a note: " Edward IV. is buried in this place." 

We have seen that John Tresilian was principal 
smith at St. George's Chapel in 1482-3, and 
received jTz^ 5s. as against ^^12 paid to the mason, 
and there can be little doubt that the suggestion * 
which has been made that he was at this time 
engaged on the splendid iron tomb screen of 
Edward IV.'s tomb is correct. -f* Sandford gives a 
good engraving of it in its original place, and says 
that the king (d. 1483) "lies in the new chapel 
whose foundation himself had laid under a monu- 
ment of steel polished and gilt representing a pair 
of gates between two towers all of curious trans- 
parent workmanship, in the north arch near to the 
High Altar." 

The articles of the " whole company of the craft 
of blacksmiths" assembling at St. Thomas of Acres 
in the Brotherhood of St. Loys in 1434 consisting 
of 68 (named) members has been printed. J 

• Tighe and Davis. 

t The locksmiths were a distinct craft. I have found mentioned 
Lawrence Hereford serruiar^ working at the palace in 13 14. Another 
is John Wylde, lockycr, in 1373. 

t London and Middlesex Archaeological Society, vol. iv. 



In the Fabric Roll of 1249 we find that a 
William was then plumber ; and in 1253 William 
py / and Roger, plumbers, were engaged 

, , by task-work on the belfry. In the 
^ r palace account for 1259 John Govair and 

-^ ' William le Strand are said to have been 
paid "for founding and laying eight fothers of lead 
by task" at 5s. a fother. When paid otherwise 
they had 4d. a day. 

The joiners were at an early time a distinct 
craft from the carpenters ; we have seen on p. 160 
that Jacob, the junctor, probably wrought the 
stalls of the church in 1253. In 1307 Richard 
Godfrey and John Reed, junctors, were working at 
the palace, and the same account which names 
them* gives remarkably full references to trades- 
men : Master John was plasterer, and William and 
John of Oxford tilers.-f 

• British Museum. Add. 30, 263. 

t In the Pipe Roll accounts for the church in 48-51 Hen. III. 
plaster appears as well as lime. This must have been plaster of Paris. 



" // // trodden^ tvom^ and dirtied ; yet is it not a national 
treasure ; when it is quite destroyed can toe shoto suck 
another ? " Malcolm. 

The Presbytery Pavement : Tomb of John and Katherine : Tombs of 
John " and Margaret de Valence : The Confessor's Shrine : Tomb of 
Henry III. : Floor of the Confessor's Chapel. 

The Italian mosaics in the church are in every way 
remarkable. There are in all six works, and it is 
^/ doubtful if the art of the Roman Cos- 

p / mati School can be more conveniently 

p y y studied in any other place. Hardly can 
one of them be matched this side of the 
Alps. From the contemporary descriptions of 
other works and from the Romances we gather that 
such work was known as opus mosaicum^ or in 
French, (for musik. 

The pavement of the presbytery is accurately 
engraved in " Gleanings." An inscription inlaid 
into the marble bands may still in part be traced. 
It stated that the floor was the work of Odericus of 
Rome in 1268. The legend was printed in full by 
Camden in 1 600 ; and there is in the British 
Museum a copy made about 1460 by the monk, 
Richard Sporley, in his MS. Lives of the Abbots. -f 
This writer adds a much needed explanation of an 

^ Symon Simeonis, a traveller from England, thus describes the 
decorations of St. Mark's early in the fourteenth century, 
t MS. Claud, A. 8. 



enigmatical part of the inscription. From this 
copy and the evidence of the pavement itself it is 
clear that the inscription was not continuous as 
usually printed {e.g. " Gleanings "), but was divided 
into three parts, disposed {a) on the great square ; 
{i) around the quatrefoil within the diagonal square; 
{c) around the central circle. I have verified the 
following points : (a) began on the east side of 
the great square ; (6) was on a continuous strip 
of brass, only the matrix of which remains ;* (c) 
was around the inner circle. As this follows in 
order from the outside to the centre, and as {a) 
begins in front of the altar with the usual sign 
+ I shall print the lines as arranged on the pave- 
ment although the MS. puts (a) last. This first 
part can be wholly verified from the pavement 
and Scott's illustrations. -f- 

+ : xpi : MiLLENo : bicenteno : duodeno : cvm : 


We should understand from these verses begin- 
ning " XPI Milleno," says Sporley, Anno Domini 
one thousand two hundred and sixty-eight ; Henry 
the Third being the king, and Odericus the cemen- 
tarius ; Richard de Ware, abbot, brought the 
porphyry and divers jaspers and marbles of Thaso 
from Rome. The next section {A) has entirely dis- 
appeared. I print it as given by Widmore, from 
the Sporley MS. : 

* A groove exists around the parallelogram on the north side under 
which Abbot Ware was buried. The panel on the south had no such 
inscription. t The beginning + XPI is at the north-east angle. 




From these five verses in the other quadrangle 
may be known the time of the end of the world : 
Three Hedges means 3 years ; a Dog 9 ; Horse 
27 ; Man 81 ; Stag 243 ; Raven 729 ; Eagle 
2187 ; Whale 6561 ; the World 19,683. 

This curious account I find confirmed in a copy 
of the verses made only thirty or forty years after 
the pavement was laid, in the MS. Arundel 30, at 
the Herald's College, written with numbers thus : 

Sepes trima : Canes & Equos : hoiesq' sb addas 

243 729 2187 6561 19683 

Cervos & Corvos : Aquilas Immania Cete Mundii 
qdq' seqns peuntes tplicat annos. 

I find the whole five lines again at the beginning 
of a short chronology printed in the Rolls 
edition of Rishanger, and written apparently in 
1 31 1.* 

As is well known, animals were by mediaeval 
writers thought to live to a great age, and such 
a chronological scheme as this of the pavement 
was part of the folk-lore of most countries from 
Italy to Ireland. Under the title, " The Legend of 

• This follows the reading Sepes trima as in the last copy, and may 
be taken as the right text. The Primum mobile was the ninth or outer 
revolving sphere of the universe. Its revolution was evidently thought 
to coincide in time with the ninth progression of the legend (the world). 
In Mediaeval Chronicles, i a.d. = 5199 a.m. 



the Oldest Animals" Mr. Whitley Stokes pub- 
lished several variations nearly twenty years ago in 
the (t/lcademy.''^ The Irish form (fifteenth century) 
v^^as perhaps the most like the Westminster 
inscription. It read : A year for the stake, three 
years for the field, three times the field the hound ; 
three times the hound, the horse, on through man, 
stag, ousel, eagle, salmon, yew, the world. 

We now come to part \c) of the inscription, of 
which the last two words can still be traced 
on the floor : 


From this verse about the round stone in the 
middle of the floor, says Sporley, we are to learn 
that it resembles the globe of the spheres because 
it has the four colours of the Elements — fire, air, 
water, earth — and is a microcosm of the universe. 
I suppose from this that the central stone was of 
porphyry, which might be supposed to combine 
the colours red, white, blue, and brown. There 
cannot be a doubt that the mosaic pavement on 
which the Ambassadors stand in Holbein's cele- 
brated picture in the National Gallery represents 
this pavement as noticed independently by Miss 
Harvey and myself. I believe it was selected by 
Holbein because it symbolised Time, on which 
death throws its recurring shadow, as in the 
picture the skull forms the gnomon to the dial of 
the pavement. The central disc on the painting 
has a pattern which is found on one of the discs of 

* 1 889. It is traced back to Hcsiod, the Mahabarata, and old Buddhist 


mosaic in the Confessor's chapel. About 1866 
the steps before the altar were put back further 
eastward and a strip here was restored, Scott says, 


Fig, 106. — Brass letters existing in the Presbytery 

from old fragments.* Pieces on the north and 
south sides were also laid down at the same time. 
I have no doubt that the original was just a square 
made up on the sides with plain paving. 

The mosaic is in good preservation notwithstand- 
ing rough usage. A century ago, when Malcolm 

• " Recollections.' 



protested against people being admitted to this 
floor, only eleven of the brass letters remained — 

R,E,M,N,T,A, around 
the centre and OE, 
NO, E, on the sides of 
the great square. Now 
still fewer of the actual 
letters exist. (Fig. io6.) 
The interlacing pattern 
of one of the circle 
fillings on the left is 
distinctly Arabic. It 
is well known how 
Fig. io7.-Pattem of one of the Arabic art influenced 

small circles in pavement Cosmatl WOrk m Sicily 

and South Italy, and 
here we get a direct touch of the Orient.* 
(Fig. 107.) 

The mosaic tomb in the south ambulatory is 
now usually called that of Katherine, daughter of 
Henry III. A Pipe Roll entry of 
1256—7 notes a payment to Master 
Simon of Well for going to West- 

Tomb of 
John and 

' minster with his tools to make a tomb 
7 • for the Princess Katherine. As this is 

entered under Dorset and Somerset, and is associated 
with a payment for Purbeck marble, it is probable 
that Simon was a marbler from Corfe, and Dean 
Stanley suggested that " Well " is Weal near Corfe. 
Stow calls the mosaic tomb the tomb of the 

* The pavement was drawn full-size by Talman, r. 17 10. Dart says 
the drawing was given to the Antiquaries. 



children of Henry HI. and Edward I. 
number 9." Speed (1632) gives the names of 
Richard, John (d. 1250), Henry (d. 1260), and 
Katherine, children of Henry HI., and of John, 
Henry, Alphonso, and Eleanor, children of Edward I. 
The last four, he adds, had their "portraits" 
painted above the tomb. 
Vestiges of these paintings 
(which are shown in Dart's 
engraving, 1723) can still be 
traced. Keepe (1683) says 
the tomb enclosed the bones 
of the children of Henry HI. 
and that it was set up by 
Edward I. for his children. 
According to Matthew of 
Westminster, Alphonso was 
in 1284 laid with his before 
buried brothers and sisters " near the feretrum of 
St. Edward," enclosed in " marble, porphyry, and 
thaso." This describes our tomb, but says that it 
was near the shrine, and we get from this a clue to a 
complicated history. In the accounts for the tomb 
of Richard II. an item appears for removing a tomb 
to make room for that of the king, and for painting 
done to it when so removed.* Now an examina- 
tion of the lower arch above the mosaic tomb will 
show that the deep recess was formed for it at the 
end of the fourteenth century, and the painting 
above it, as shown by Dart, was clearly of the same 
date. It is evident that the tomb was not made 
for the position it now occupies. At its east end 

• See above, p. 278. 


Fig. 108. — Pattern of top 
of tomb 


part of the mosaic is buried, and at the west hidde 
mosaic may be felt. This tomb, then, was fin 
erected in the Confessor's chapel and was remove* 
to a position opposite by Richard II. Nor is thii 
I believe, the only tomb which has been removed 
as said above the enamelled effigy of William d 
Valence must, I feel sure, like the grave slabs c 
his children (as we shall see) have once occupied 
place in the Confessor's chapel. 

At the Record Office there are two smal 
accounts rendered by Robert of Beverley " fo 
works at Westminster after the burial of the king 
(Henry III., 1272), being wages of several work 
men engaged on the tombof D'^John deWyndsor. 
In the printed Issue Rolls, 1272-3, is the corrc 
sponding entry of a payment to Master Robert c 
j^l6 1 6s. 4^d. (a large sum) for the wages of diver 
workmen engaged on the tomb of Prince John fc 
16 weeks (a long time). Alphonso, we have seer 
was buried in the tomb of his brother in 1284, an 
the tomb was described as made of marbles an 
porphyry. The time of the making of John' 
tomb is between the dates of the mosaics of th 
presbytery floor and the shrine. The argumcii 
seems conclusive that the tomb at present existin 
is that made for Prince John in 1272. He wa 
only four years old, and Alphonso died at the ag 
of twelve. 

My reading of this complicated story is this 
Katherine dying a dozen years before the consc 
cration of the king's new work was buried in th 
nave, or more probably in St. Katherine's Chape 

• Exchequer Works, Q.R. 471, 8. 


According to Strype, a brass image is mentioned 
in connection with her tomb, and in 1259 a lectern 
at the altar and tomb of Katherine was made. The 
original tomb, made in 1257, cannot be our mosaic 
tomb, for at that time the mosaic workers were not 
engaged in the church. In 1272 a new tomb of 
mosaic in the style then in favour was made for 
Prince John, and Katherine's body was translated 
into the same tomb in the newly consecrated work. 
The silver image for the tomb of Katherine men- 
tioned in the account for 1272 may have been 
prepared in view of this translation. In or about 
1394 this tomb was removed from the position 
coveted by Richard II., the up recess where it 
now stands was prepared, and its low arch is a work 
of this date. The mosaic tomb is most probably 
complete, and the side hidden in the wall must be 
still in its first splendour. 

Close in front of Henry V.'s chantry there are 

two grave-slabs, one of which has been found, by 

cf L f cutting away the step, to be orna- 

^ , A mented with mosaic and brass. Dart 

i^ speaks of it as having had a cross, and 

. Ji^, in a good light the matrix of the arm ot 
de Valence^ 1 • .1 ^n • -ui 

' a plain cross was recently still visible, 

77* I ^ in. from the head of the slab, as well 

as a trace of the upper limb between two shield- 
shaped cavities. These shields, like the cross, must 
have been of metal. A portion of the foot and 
shaft of the cross remains, protected by the step ; 
also four brass letters on each side — L A M E and 
R L E A. This portion has been illustrated by 



Boutell, who shows also the traces of three other 
letters on the north side, thus — VIILAME : The 
vestiges of the first letters were still visible ten 
years ago when I studied this tomb, the third 
appeared to be L, and the whole VjVILLAME. 
(Fig. 109.) 

Camden has preserved the tradition that the 

Fig. 109. — Tombs of John and Margaret 

two slabs cover John, son of William de Valence, 

and Margaret his daughter. Stow also mentions 

their tombs, but the validity of the ascription has 

been doubted.* 

I find in the Rolls edition of " Matthew of 

Westminster " that John, eldest son of William de 

Valencia, was buried at Westminster by the side of 

his sister Margaret in 1277. In the Sporley MS. 

we find that William established 160 masses for 

his son in the church ; and in two old lists of the 

* Dart, and *« Gleanings." 


tombs (summarised below), which evidently date 
back to the days before the desolation of dissolution, 
the two tombs situated between the Confessors 
shrine and the tomb of Henry V. are said to be 
those of John and Margaret. As in 1277 Peter, 
the mosaic worker, would have been already 
engaged on his work for the shrine which he signed 
two years later, we may ascribe this work to him. 

The name William comes in such a pcsition as 
would suit an inscription following the usual for- 
mula, Ici gist Johan fitzGuillame. . . . The 
other letters, R. L. E. A. I cannot explain. Bou- 
tell's suggestion that it was part of De Va[rlea]nce 
is impossible.* 

I had looked on the slab of Margaret as quite 
plain, until one day noticing the marks of brass 
rivets on it I felt back under the step of the 
chantry, when I found the stem and base of a brass 
cross still in position, also the matrices of two 
border lines of brass and some letters of an inscrip- 
tion, some of which are still in place. This slab 
extends 2 ft. 3 in. under the step, and as both are 
otherwise similar this dimension gives the size of 
the other as well. 

The marble and mosaic basement of the shrine 
bears an original inscription and date (now mostly 
^t hidden by plaster) which records the 

^ r , fact that it was wrought by one JPcter 
oL'^^^^ of Rome. (Fig. no.) A copy of the 
inscription has been kept, and the 
plaster having fallen away at the east end traces 

• London and Middlesex Archaeological Society, vol. i. 


Fic. 1 lo. — One-half of S. tide of the Marble and Mosaic Batemrnt of the Shrine. Fro 
Vertuet* engraving. The inscription is of the time of Abbot Feckenham 


of it may there be seen which agree with the 
written copies. These copies, however, differ 
among themselves in the important particular of 
the date, Widmore and Neale writing sexageno 
where others write septuageno. In " Gleanings '* the 
latter is given, but the date of 1269 is retained in 
the commentary upon it. The only original 
authority appears to be Sporley's MS. {c. 1460) 
which gives the word as septuageno. 


GENO : ET : 

DENo : HOC : opvs : est : factvm : qvod : 


(3.) DvxiT : IN : ACTVM : ROMANVS I civis : homo: 


The third part as here printed represents the 
portion now exposed, which, filling the east end, is 
sufficient to show that the inscription began on the 
west front and followed right around much as 
printed above. A close inspection shows that it 
was inlaid in mosaic, of which only the matrices of 
the tesserae now remain. The letters were inlaid 
in bigger pieces than the mosaic ground in which 
they were inserted. (Fig. 1 1 1.) The Sporley MS. 
speaks of the inscription as of coloured and gilt 
stones, and at the south-west corner one upright 
stroke remains formed of pieces of dark blue glass, 
and this is suflicient to show the material and 
method of execution. The smaller tesserae of the 
background must have been gilt, and we learn from 
Vertue that, when in 1741 some of the parts now 

X 321 


exposed came to light, it was " of glass, yellow like 
gold, cut, and set in." Within two months, how- 
ever, it was all picked out.* The inscription, 
therefore, was formed of bars of blue glass set in 
gold mosaic.-f- The inscription is really a memorial 
to Henry HI. after his death in 1272. 

When the shrine was destroyed by Henry VHI. 


Fig. III. — Restoration of part of inscription on Basement of Shrine 

the marble base was pulled down and the Con- 
fessor was buried on its site. The marble work 
was set up again by Abbot Feckenham in iSSJ^X 
and it was then repaired with plaster painted to 
imitate the mosaic. A new inscription was painted 
over the old one, which begins and ends with 
cyphers of the letters I[OHN]F. A[BBOT]. (Fig. 
1 12.) The wooden structure which now represents 
the shrine proper was then made. It was decorated 
with inlays of glass painted at the back. Hardly a 
foot of the original mosaic of the basement remains, 

• Archaolo^a^ vol. i. 

t About ten years after 1279 three marble columns, costing 46s 8A, 
were made and placed around the shrine. These may have been isolated, 
something like those at the St. Alban's shrine, and may have supported 
lights. " Gleanings," p. 136. 

X See Mr. Micklethwaite in Proc. Soc. Antiq., 189^. 

Fig. 112. — 


but some of the patterns may be traced by their 
imprint in the cement. (Fig. 113.) 

Broken fragments of the marble-work are from 
time to time found. Scott refixed a portion of the 
architrave, and only last year a piece 
was discovered. 

In Italy two or three dozen in- 
scribed works of the Cosmati school of 
marble-workers are known, and the 
signature Civis Romanus is frequently 
found. Cavaliere Boni, in a study of 
the subject, describes the Westminster shrine-base 
as the work of one of the most skilful of the 
Roman Marmorarii. 
The construction of the marble basement is in 
slab-work, forming a series of 
stall-like recesses in which the 
people knelt. There is only 
a slab of about 5 or 6 in. 
thick down the centre' which 
separates the opposite recesses. 
(Fig. 114.) The transverse 
dividing slabs are about the 
same thickness, and other 
pieces are added on to the face. 
The trefoil heads are cut out 
of slabs, and the arched soffites 
behind them are formed by 
inclining two thin pieces cut 
to a curve. The small writhing shafts at the 
angles of all the recesses are separately inserted. In 
the decoration one pattern of guilloche is used on 
the north side and another on the south, and these 







Fig. 113. — Mosaic paltern 


two patterns meet in the centre of the east 

When the marble-work was refixed under 
Abbot Feckenham a change was made in the dis- 
position of the slab-work above the trefoil heads 

Fig. 114. — Plan of Basement of Shrine 

ot the recesses, the slab of the east end formerly 

overlapped the side slabs thus — ^ ' . Now, 


the ends of the slab to the east being broken, the 

slabs to the north and south are made to lap over it 

thus — •' — rj— . This throws the pattern out 

of centre down the sides, and at the west end there 
are gaps of 2^ in. against the reredos slab, which 
gaps are filled up by plaster. 

The facts as to the west end are not so certain. 
Scott says he "exposed the marks showing where the 
altar had been fixed, and came to the conclusion that 
the pillars were formerly detached. The retabu- 
lum occupies its proper position, excepting that it 
had been lifted 3 in. above its original level, a fact 


proved by its intercepting the space required for 
the completion of the inscriptions. The retabulum 
being decorated with mosaic, and the edges left 
plain, it follows that the latter must have been 
more or less concealed. I judge that the detached 
pillars must have been 
placed close to them. I 
opened the ground round 
the half-buried pillars at 
the west end, and found 
them to agree in height with 
those at the east."* Scott's 
view as to the position ot 
the reredos is confirmed 
by the spacing of the in- 
scription, which neces- 
sarily began on the west 
front, as shown above, but 
I do not think that the 
spiral columns stood close 
to its edges as he suggests. 
There are in these edges 
certain deep holes, and 
these, it seems to me, were for the attachment ot 
vertical casing pieces other than the columns. In 
Scott's " Recollections " he says many things had 
come to light since the publication of " Gleanings '*; 
amongst them were " some fragments belonging to 
the shrine of St. Edward, e.g.^ a piece of the return 
of the cornice by its western end over the reredos." 
Scott had this fragment fixed in place, it was a 
piece of the " architrave " member ranging with 



Fig. 115. — Part of West end of 
Basement of Shrine 

" Gleanings," p. 59. 



the inscription. It jutted out about a foot from the 
south end of the reredos, and it had sinkings for 
mosaic on the front, back, and end. (Fig. 115.) 
A projection of the architrave was called for in any 
case, for the reredos slab is 3 in. or 4 in. too wide 

to fit under the architrave 
member without additional 
projections. The great pro- 
jection of the piece would not 
only allow of the additional 
pilaster pieces at the ends of 
the reredos, as suggested above, 
but it seems possible also that 
the projections may have been 
Fig. 116.— Restoration of long enough to rest also on the 
one of the patterns 5 j^^j columns. In that casc 

of Mosaic. Tomb of ^i . c sA^ r> c 

Henry III ^^^ images ot the Confessor 

and the pilgrim-beggar would 
have stood above. If there was not room for this 
the columns and figures would have stood free, 
possibly nearer the front of the altar. The altar 
itself would have supported the reredos.* 

When Henry III. died, Edward I. was still in 
the East. The king was buried before the Great 

tr I r Altar of the church. In 1280, accord- 
Tomb of . ^ j^. . ' 

Henrylll ^"^ Rishanger, a contemporary, 

•^ ' Edward I. brought precious stones of 
jasper, de partibus Gallicanis^ to beautify his father's 
tomb, that is, the present tomb of mosaic, which 
was probably begun in this year after the com- 

• The fragment has again been removed to allow of recent alterations 
to the shrine-base, and it now rests, I believe, on the eastern cornice. 


pletion of the work at the shrine. The bronze 
effigy, we know for certain, was not completed till 
1 29 1. Mosaic and effigy together, the tomb is 
surpassingly beautiful. "II gist a Westmonster 
entombe richment." * ^^^^^^^^_^^ 

The pavement of the 1 "" " "^^ 

chapel must have been 

El, r ornamented 
Floor of . , . 

^L r> with Its mo- 
tne Con-- . . . 

n , saic after the 

Chapel, ^'"g.^ *r 
^ was m place, 

for the pattern is ar- 
ranged to stop short of 
the bottom step of the 
tomb. The pattern of ^^^^^ ,,.__^^-_--;.,._^^sv^ 
this floor is applied quite 1 ^^^Jl[ _ ^[/^fl/_ 
irrespective of the joint- ^ ^ ^^, T~~^ 

*■ r 1 1 1 • Fig. 117. — Pattern of Mosaic floor 

ing of the slabs into in the Confessor's Ch.pel 

which it is inserted. 

This marble basis is very irregular, and applying 
an " all-over " pattern to it in this wav seems to be 
the most natural and direct manner of dealing with 
such a floor, I cannot think that Burges^s sugges- 
tion that it was prepared before laying is possible ; 
nor can I believe that, as he supposed, this is an 
English work, for the patterns which fill the circles, 
based mostly on hexagons, have a distinctly Oriental 
complexion. -f* The pattern is, in fact, a variation of 

• Langtoft. 

t There is great variety in these roundels, some two hundred, nearly 
all different. (SeeFig. i8.) 



that on the tomb of Katherine, similar inter-locking 
circular bands being arranged on a hexagonal setting- 
out instead of on squares. (Figs. io8 and 117.) 

In the printed extract from the Pipe Roll ot 
1267-8 we find that pavior-masons were then 
laying a pavement before the feretrum.* I suppose 

Fig. 118. — Mosaic Centres of Pavement. (Fig. 117) 

that the marble slabs were then laid in preparation 
for the consecration of the next year, and that the 
mosaic was cut in about 1285 after the completion 
of Henry III.'s tomb. 

The square of mosaic at Canterbury is so 
different in style that it may well be English work. 

Old St. Paul's must have had a similar floor in a 
part of the choir, where might be seen " a parcel 
of pavement of black marble spotted with green 
similar to some at Westminster.^-f* 

* On looking at the original roll I find this appears as a separate 
entry — et in stipemiis quorda cementartorum^ &c., and it seems more 
probable that it refers to the Roman masons laying the Presbytery floor. 

t Harrison. " Description of England." 


" He regnyd Kyng ivi yen 
And to IVestmynstre men hymn bereT 

Robert of Gloucester on Henry III. 

Kings' Effigies and Royal Epitaphs : Records of Tombs : The Abbots' 
Graves : The Chapels. 

In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries persons of 
distinction were carried to their graves exposed to 
«.. , view, and dressed in official robes after 

^^^. having been embalmed. Of Henry II. 

^^ * we are told by Matthew Paris that 
the manner of his burial was thus : " He was 
clothed in royal robes, his crown upon his head, 
white gloves on his hands, boots of gold-work 
(embroidery) upon his legs, gilt spurs upon his 
heels, a great rich ring upon his finger, his sceptre 
in his hand, his sword by his side, and his face 
uncovered and all bare." 

Queen Alianor was embalmed and carried to 
her grave attired in regal dress, with crown and 
sceptre, but her brow and breast were signed with 
the cross in dust.* 

In 1774 the tomb of Edward I. was opened, 
and the body was found covered by a crimson silk 
tunic with a jewelled orphrey, over which was a 
mantle of crimson satin fastened over the left shoulder 
with a great brooch.-f* The hands seemed to have 

• " Chronicles Reigns Edward I. and II.," Rolls Series. Eleanor 
of Provence was embalmed and not buried for months, 
t The gold and jewels were imitations. 


I . 

that t 
for th:. 
of He 


part of 
of pavv 

notes to . 
was litcr.^ 
Nor can 

.»n ot l!.n^ 


Burges has argued that neither the effigy ot 
Henry III. nor that of Queen Alianor can be 
accepted as a portrait, but this can only be true 
in a very limited sense. They may have been, 
and were, idealised into types, but to suppose that 
likeness was not aimed at is surely absurd, and we 
have it on record in the account for the king's 
image that it was made ad simtlttudinem regis Henrici. 
It is urged that Alianor was over fifty when she 
died. Miss Strickland says forty-seven, and Alianor 
was famous for beauty ; Gough cites Langtoft as 
saying that the sculptors of her time made their 
figures of the Virgin in the likeness of the queen.* 
The sculptors of the time, indeed, were imitating 
nature in all their carvings. When we find portraits 
of vine and maple, oak and thorn, it is most unlikely 
that the king and queen were mere impersonal 
images. Such sculptures as these were never carved 
"out of people's heads." The effigy of Queen 
Philippa and all later royal statues are admitted to 
be portraits. 

The metal head and the casing of the figure of 
Henry the Fifth have been destroyed. How- 
ever, in the two groups representing his Coronation, 
sculptured above on the sides of the chantry, his 
head is so recognisably like that engraved by 
Sandford from a picture then at Whitehall, that 
there is no doubt of these being portraits ; probably 
the most authentic which exist, for the paintings 

for the singular coincidences between the effigy of King John on the lid 
of his coffin and the body within it, when discovered a few years ago." 
At the Abbey some funeral effigies — one as early as Edward III. it is 
thought — are preserved. • I cannot find the passage. 



may have been done subsequently from the tomb 

The bronze of Henry VH. is, I think, the original 
from which Holbein drew his cartoon now at 

Not only the effigies but the small figures ot 
weepers standing around some of the tombs were 
at least intended to be portraits. Those of the tomb 
of Edward HI. are obviously in the likeness of the 
persons whose arms are placed below, and a 
mediaeval document indexed in Bentley's Cartulary 
says that they were images of all the king^s sons 
and daughters. A list seems also to have been 
made of the weepers around Queen Philippa's tomb. 
There cannot be a doubt that, although the arms 
once painted on the shields around John of Eltham's 
tomb have been obliterated, these figures represent 
Edward II., Queen Isabella, Edward III., and other 
royal relations. 

Notwithstanding the many volumes which con- 
tain collections of the epitaphs, a critical account of 
•n i those which were original or mediaeval 

vl'f 'hh ^^^ never been given . 
^ ^ ' The usual authorities are, a tract by 
Camden,* first published in 1600, Weever's col- 
lection, 1 63 1, and Keepers, 1683. Camden's tract 
seems to have been sold in the church, and was, in 
fact, the first guide book -f* to it. 

The epitaphs of the abbots were collected by 
Flete, c. 1450, for his MS. " Lives of the Abbots," 

• " Reges," &c. 

t Brcnchley Rye. "Travellers in England." 


now in the Abbey library; they are also given in 
the Sporley MS. at the British Museum, which 
also contains the inscriptions from the shrine and 
mosaic floor. They were printed by Widmore, 
1 75 1. A part of Camden's collection must have 
been transcribed from Sporley 's or a similar MS. 

Skelton, the poet, it is said, "collected the 
epitaphs of such of our kings, princes, and nobles 
as then lay buried in the Abbey,*' but Widmore, 
failing to nnd this account, raised doubts as to its 
ever having had an existence.* Weever, however, 
seems to have used a diff^erent MS. from those now 
known. He gives epitaphs of Queen Matilda, 
Abbot Islip, and others, not now obtainable from 
other sources, and he refers to a Cottonian MS. 
" wherein are divers funeral collections and other 
inscriptions gathered about the time of the Dis- 

Again, it has been too hastily assumed that such 
of the inscriptions as were not monumental but 
"written on tablets" were not ancient. Dean 
Stanley says that Skelton, while in sanctuary, wrote 
" the doggerel epitaphs which were hung over the 
royal tombs." Keepe, indeed, tells us that " two 
ancient tablets in writing, with many verses written 
by Skelton," were suspended at the tomb of 
Henry VH. These, however, were signed by the 
poet with his titles of laureate and king's orator, 
and they were official eulogies which belonged to 
the tomb from the time of its completion, and 
themselves become evidence of an ancient custom. 
They were dated 1 5 1 2, and as the poet died in 1 529, 

• Sec Widmorc's account of writers on the Abbey. 



his verses must belong to the old order of things. He 
represented the king's versifiers, who, as Warton 
pointed out, can be traced back to the thirteenth 

A famous church in the Middle Ages was crowded 
with inscriptions on walls, monuments, glass, pic- 
tures, and many hanging tablets. A church was 
in every way a thing to be read. 

In old St. Paul's a table of its dimensions hung 
from the fourteenth century. A short chronicle 
was placed there about 1432, and Dugdale gives 
several epitaphs written on tablets, and two or three 
ancient ones appear in his plates. They were 
framed panels with sheets of parchment nailed to 
them. In 1351 John Holegh, citizen, made a 
bequest to Bow Church, and a record of it was to 
be "written on parchment and placed upon a 
tablet fixed at the foot of the image" which he 
gave. One remarkable example which still exists 
is a fifteenth-century account of Glastonbury Abbey, 
being three or four tablets hinged together. 

At Westminster most of the longer epitaphs of 
the abbots must have been on tablets ; some shorter 
inscriptions are distinguished as " cut in stone." 
At Henry V.'s chantry there was a tablet giving 
directions as to the masses. Caxton {c. 1475) tells 
us that the epitaph of Chaucer, buried before the 
chapel of S. Benedict, was written on a " table " 
hanging to a pillar.* Another tablet which hung 
by Sebert's tomb is described by Dart as " some 

X aciC^PI^I ^E ^Z Soc^^^^s ■ " 'r^^ ^ody lieth ... to face the chapel 
' ' ^^ * ose sepulture is written on a table hanging on a pillar 

• " Rfgesy^'lt was by Stephen Surigonus, poet laureate, and 

t Brcnchley 


writing not legible, in parchment, framed, I sup- 
pose placed there at the time of translating the 
body." Now these same verses, which are printed 
by Keepe and others, I find given in the Chronicle 
of Richard of Cirencester, a monk at the Abbey at 
the latter end of the fourteenth century,* 

With all this before us we are prepared to 
believe that the royal epitaphs on tablets, of 
which this last was practically one, may also go back 
to the fourteenth or even to the thirteenth cen- 
tury. Of one of these royal epitaphs we have 
direct early evidence. 

Matilda, queen of Henry I. (d. 1118), was 
buried in the old church and reinterred at the side 
of the Confessor's shrine. Now the fifteenth- 
century Register Book of Holy Trinity, Aldgate,-!* 
gives her epitaph " on a table which hung over 
her grave." 

Hie jacet domina Matild secuda bene Regina 
Anglor . . . 

Here lies the lady Maud, the Queen of the 
English, once wife of Henry I. and mother of 
Maud the Empress, who died the first day of May 
in the year of grace 1 1 18, of whose goodness and 
probity, if we should go about to tell all, the day 
would be too short, &c. It may very well be that 
it is to this epitaph that Langtoft refers — 

" If any one will wittcn of her story 
At Westminster it is written readily." 

In Keepe's time most of the royal tombs still 
had their " tables " by them. It has been objected 
that dates given on these epitaphs were not accurate, 

• Rolls Series. t Liber Trinitatis. 



but close examination shows that these wrong 
dates did not belong to the tablets. 

In Keepers Collection there are no less than four 
inscriptions given in connection with some of the 
tombs which he distinguishes by differences in his 
type. The tomb of Henry IIL, for instance, had 
(i) the monumental and existing inscription in 
French " round the verge " ; (2) a three-line Latin 
epitaph in verse " on a table *' (printed in italic) ; 
(3) a short inscription giving a wrong date (printed 
in Roman) ; (4) English verses translating the 
Latin table (printed in black-letter). 

The inscription (3) which contains the wrong 
date is one of a series which were painted on the 
royal tombs ; they agree in ending in short mottoes 
and giving dates in figures. 

Vestiges of these inscriptions are still discoverable 
on the shrine, on the tombs of Edward I., Alianor, 
Henry V., &c., and they must all, like that on the 
shrine, be the work of Abbot Feckenham. 

The English verses (4) are given in Fabyan*s 
Chronicle (15 16) as translations made by himself 
of " tables hanging on the tombs," Fabyan wrote 
his Chronicle about 1494 and died in 1513. In 
the fifteenth century, therefore, there were a series 
of written " Epitaphies " at the tombs, which were 
interesting enough to be transcribed and translated 
into " Ballad Royal." 

Later the English versions made by Fabyan 
were also placed at the tombs to explain the 

The tablet epitaph on Henry III. " in monkish 

rymes" (Camden) is one of those printed by 



Fabyan. It appropriately referred to the rebuilding 
of the church, and is, I have no doubt, authentic : 

Tertivs Henricvs iacet hie pietatis amicvs 
Ecclesiam stravit istam qvam post renovavit 
Reddet ei mvnvs qvi regnat trinvs et vnvs. 

The epitaph of Alianor, which Sandford says 
was on " a tablet of wood hanging in an iron 
chain," contained the words : 

Foemina consilio prudens pia prole beata 
Auzit amicitiis auzit honore virum.* 

Of Edward I. a part of the epitaph which 
Fabyan says was hung out over the tomb ran : 

Corde leopardus invictus et absque pavore 
Ad rizam tardus discretus et eucharis ore. 

Fabyan quotes some lines on Edward, which are 
also given by the Continuator of Matthew of West- 
minster as by another " verse-maker," and in subse- 
quent works these appear at the end of the long 
inscription. Another " large epitaph in prose " 
on Edward I. is given in Camden's " Remains " ; it 
was " affixed at the altar of St. Edward, near his 

Camden gives the epitaph of Henry the Fifth. -f* 
Sandford, Keepe, and others have printed the long 
epitaphs on tablets at the tombs of Philippa and 
Richard II. 

If ancient inscriptions have been neglected much 
has been made of one of the modern ones. The 
legend painted on the tomb of Edward I. which 

* The monumental inscription from Alianor's tomb has been given 
on p. 288. By some oversight the excellent Deanery guide says that 
that of Henry III.'s tomb no longer exists. t ** Remains," 

Y 337 


contained the epithet Scottorum Malleus and the 
motto Pactum Serva belongs to the series of in- 
scriptions painted on the monuments in the time 
of Feckenham, each of which ended in such a 
motto. It is impossible to say from the general 
character of these mottoes whether this one, which 
Bishop Stubbs tells us Edward " took for his 
motto," and which Mr. York Powell thought so 
characteristic, was even selected to apply to the 
king, and was not merely a sentiment addressed 
to the reader.* 

The tomb itself is quite a puzzle, being a simple 
chest of black marble absolutely without adorn- 
ment or engraved inscription. It must show either 
the austerity of Edward I. or the neglect of his 
son. I incline to the view that it was prepared by 

Langtoft, who brings his Chronicle down to 
the death of Edward I., says that he was buried : — 
" AWestmonster,in toumbe de marbre ben poly e." 

Miss Strickland translates from William of Wor- 
cester the original epitaph once at the tomb of 
Queen Katherine in the Lady Chapel. 

Death, daring spoiler of the world, has laid 
Within this tomb the noble clay that shrined 
Queen Katherine's soul ; from the French king derived 
Of our fifth Harry wife ; . . . 

The long monumental inscription, once on the 
tomb of William de Valence, half-brother to Henry 
III., is also given by Camden, and Keepe says it was 

* I am assuming that the tomb is the only authority for the associa- 
tion with Edward ; the words pactum serva sanum occur in a poem, 
c, 1260. Wright's Political Songs. 


around the verge of the tomb, and of " Saxon 
letters/' that is, what we call Lombardio. Sandford 
describes, and gives the inscriptions from the tombs 
of the infant Margaret of York (1472) and of 
Elizabeth Tudor (1495). The existing inscriptions 
on the tombs of Edward III., Richard IL, and 
others may be found in most collections. In all 
these epitaphs we have a considerable number of 
historical documents, which deserve careful scrutiny 
and editing. The heraldry of the tombs, referred 
to in an appendix, also needs critical examination 
from the historical point of view. 

Our knowledge of the Abbey tombs seems at 

first to be merely traditional, but there has been, I 

T> J r believe, a continuity of record. There 
Records of . i.-l-^ j • \\. r>\^ tt 

rp J ^ \% now exhibited in the Chapter House 

a fragment of a schedule of the tombs in 
the writing of Camden. It is obvious from internal 
evidence that it must be a transcript from an old 
record written in the first case before the building 
of Henry VII.'s Chapel. The list of tombs in the 
Abbey given by Stow is also, as will be shown, 
based on such an authority which may still some- 
where exist in its entirety.* 

The following salient points are extracted from 
Camden's fragment, which is in Latin, and entitled 
" Corpora que tumulantur ecclesia mon. Beati Petri 
Westmonasterii ''-f • 

* In the indices of the Hist. MSS. Comm. I have seen more than 
one List of Burials at Westminster. 

t Or rather from a similar list printed in a single sheet at the British 
Museum, under a slightly different title, '' Corpora Sepulu Beati . . ." 



Imprimis, KING'S CHAPEL. In the midst 
the feretrum of Edward the Confessor ; on the left 
Edith his wife ; on the right Matilda, wife of 
Henry I. Item, on north (south) of the altar of 
the feretory, Margaret, daughter of Edward IV. 
On south (north) Edward and Elizabeth, children of 
Henry VII. [Tomb of this Edward not usually 
mentioned, d. 1499.] 

Between the feretory and the tomb of Henry V. 
John and Margaret, son and daughter of William 
de Valentia. 

HIGH ALTAR, on the right Walter Wenlock, 

S. ANDREW'S CHAPEL. Abbot Kirton in 
the midst. 

S. MICHAEL'S, the next chapel, William 
Trussel under image of S. George. [Trussel, 
according to Stanley, was first Speaker of Parlia- 
ment. Fabyan speaks of him as the procurator of 
Parliament under Edward 11. who pronounced the 
deposition of the king. Is it not possible that the 
foliated cross still in this chapel may be Trussel's 
memorial ?] 

S. JOHN EVANGELIST, the next chapel ; 
John Harpendon at the corner ; Abbot Estney at 
his feet. [Both brasses now in ambulatory : these 
tombs formerly made the screen of the chapel. See 
Dart ; also drawing in Islip Roll.] 

[ISLIP.] In the next chapel John Islip [d. 1533], 
who built and adorned it ; also Hugh Vaughanand 
his wife Anne. 

S. MARY THE LITTLE, S. John Baptist [as 
correction], Thomas Vaughan. At the left of the 


altar Abbot Fascet [1500], and at his feet Bishop 
Thos. Routall [1523]. In the next, the same [as 
correction], chapel of St, John Baptist, William 
Colchester and Thos. Millying, Abbots [these 
corrections show some double dedication ; the 
abbots' tombs are certainly in their original posi- 
tions, forming the screens — see next section], 

S. PAUL. Between the door and altar L. 
Robeshart ; under the pavement Michael, Bishop of 
S. Asaph ; under the second steps of the door 
Rudolph chaplain to the Bishop of Carlisle. On 
the north, by the wall, in marble, Peter Calhan, 
citizen, A.D. MCCCLVIII. 

S. MARYS. [The Lady Chapel] In the 
middle, Katherine, wife of Henry V. On left of 
altar, Katherine, daughter of Duchess of Norfolk. 
On right, William Atclyffe, secretary to Edward IV. 
To the north, Thos. de Wells and William 

S. ERASMUS. Ann, daughter of Duke of 
Norfolk. [Henry VII. is not mentioned in Lady 
Chapel ; moreover, Katherine's coffin was removed 
for the works at the new chapel, and never put 
back. The chapel of S. Erasmus must also be the 
old chapel attached to Lady Chapel. Ann was 
daughter-in-law to Edward IV. and Elizabeth 
Woodville, its foundress.] 

[AMBULATORY.] Outside the south entrance 
to the chapel of S. Mary — Richard Harowden, 
Abbot. Outside the door of S. NICHOLAS, in 
the pavement, Walter Hungerford, son of Edward 
Hungerford ... of Edward III. . . . John 
Beverley with Amica [Buxtal, his wife. Matrices 



of their brasses are still outside S. Edmund's 
Chapel] . . . Hugo [de Bohun : see below] . . . 

[Abbot Harowden's grave seems to be certainly 
identifiable with that usually assigned to Berkynge. 
Stanley had the name of Harowden inserted in S. 
John Baptist's chapel close by Bishop Routall's tomb, 
because a pastoral staff and sandals were in 1879 
found under that tomb. They are now in the 
Chapter House. It was supposed by Stanley and 
others that Bishop Routall's tomb had been brought 
to this place about 1600, and hence that the remains 
could not belong to the bishop — but why Harowden 
in any case? Routall's tomb must have occupied 
its present position from 1524 (blocking original 
entrance), the new entry to S. Paul's being made 
at or before the time of his burial through what is 
now called S. Erasmus chapel — see next section.] 

The other list of tombs of which I have spoken 
is in the handwriting of Stow, and is in the Har- 
leian Collection (544). It seems to be based on 
the same source as the last, for it follows the same 
order, and again omits Henry VII. It is given in 
inventory form like the last, with its " imprimis '* 
.and " item," and is evidently translated from a Latin 
original from which some words have been carried 
over. In this case also I make use of only a small 
part of this valuable document to compare with 
the other. 

Imprimis, The Shrine of St. 'Edward: Queen 
Maud on the right. Queen Editha on left. 

Item, on right side of the altar Margaret,daughter 
of Edward IV. On the left Elizabeth, d. of 
Henry VII. At the end of the shrine Henry V., 


and John and Margaret,^ children of WiUiam de 
Valence. On the pavement by Edward III. 
Thomas of Woodstock, his son. St. MichaePs Chapel^ 
William Trussel ; St. Mary the Little^ Sir Thos. 
Vaughan ; St. John Evangelist^ Sir John Hampden 
[Harpendon] ; St. PauPs^ Sir Lewis Robsart, Sir 
Giles Daubigny in the midst ; Our Ladys Chapel. 
In the middle lyeth Queen Katherine : John, Vis- 
count Wells, Katherine, daughter of the Duchess 
of Norfolk. 

St. Erasmus. Anne, daughter of the Duke of 
Norfolk, Sir Thos. Hungerford. St. Nicholas. In 
the little tomb lieth Hugh and [Mary], son and 
daughter of Humphrey de Bohun and Elizabeth 
his wife ; Philippa, Duchess of York, &c. &c. 
Outside the chapel, Walter Hungerford, son of 
Edward Hungerford, Sir John Beverley, or Burley, 
and Anne his wife. Sir John Golofer lyeth by 
Richard II. 

St. Thomas. William and Blanche, children of 
Edward III., John of Eltham and William de 
Valence, Eleanor de Bohun, Humphrey Bourchier, 
Bernard Brocas. 

" There resteth the bones of the children of King 
Edward I. and Henry III. in number nine. At the 
entrance to the same : Robert and William Browne, 
Esquires," &c. &c. [This last paragraph is written 
as if the tomb of the children of Edward I. was in 
the chapel rather than near " the entrance to the 
same," but that must be a mistake of transcription. 

The tomb of the young De Bohunswas, we here 
see, in St. Nicholas's, and we seem to be justified in 
supposing that the Hugo of the former list refers 



to this tomb. Hugh died 1304, Mary, 1305. 
Camden, in " Reges," says the tomb of Hugh and 
Mary was in St. John Baptist^ on the left, and 
Keepe's account leaves no doubt that the tomb on 
the north side of this chapel is that which was 
pointed out as theirs. Except that it looks too 
early in style there is nothing against supposing 
that it had been shifted to this place. It is owing 
to a misplacing of his notes that in his printed 
survey Stow makes Chaucer to have been buried in 
the cloister instead of before St. Benet's Chapel, as 
Caxton says. This mistake, however, is frequently 
repeated even to-day. 

The greater number of the tombs of the abbots 

have disappeared, and in regard to them we are in 

rpi jjtt > the main dependent on Flete's and 

Graves Sporley's MSS. From the latter* the 

notes within brackets are taken. 

1049-72. Edwin [buried in the cloisters.] 

1072-76. Galfridus. 

1 076-8 1 . Vitalis [south side of cloister, under a 
small slab of white marble at the feet of Gervase.] 

1 08 2-1 121. Gislebertus [south side of cloister, 
at feet of Vitalis^ in a tomb of black marble upon which 
is his image J with a pastoral staff but no mitre j and his 
epitaph cut in the marble.] 

1 121-40. Herebert [south side of cloister, under 
a flat slab, near the bell]. 

1 140—59. Gervase [south side of cloister, under a 
small black marble stone at the feet of William de 

• Claud. A. 8. 


1159-75. Lawrence. This abbot obtained the 
right to wear the mitre, but he died before the 
grant arrived * [South side of cloister, under a 
white marble stone ^ with his image without a mitre at 
the feet of Gilbert^ and his epitaph cut in the marble]. 

1 1 75-9 1 . Walter [south side of cloister, near 
the bell]. 

1191-1200. William Postard [south side ot 
cloister, near the bell]. 

1200-14. Radulphus [in nave]. 

1214-22. William de Humez [south side of 
cloister at the head of Gervase^ under a marble stone^ 
with his image sculptured in pontijicalibus^. 

It is evident from the above descriptions that five 
of the tombs formed a group, three had effigies, and 
two were slabs. They were in this order, the 
capitals representing effigies. 

LAWRENCE, 1 175. GILBERT, iiii. Vitalif,io82. Oervase, 1 1 59. HUMEZ,I222. 

Effigy in white. Effigy in black, Small white Small black Effigy with 

no mitre. no mitre. slab. flab. mitre. 

Now there are in the south walk of the cloister 
three early effigies, but the names derived from the 
MS. have been applied to them so variously that 
attempts at proper identification have been given up. 
Keepe, in 1633, rightly names three tombs in this 
order — Lawrence, Gilbert, Vitalis. The third 
name he gives to " a plain white marble stone here- 
tofore covered with plates of brass." It is certain that 
this does not describe the third efjlgy^ which now 
bears the name of Vitalis. He, however, makes 
the mistake of assigning the immense black slab, 
which covers the monks who died in the plague, to 

* R. de DicetOy in Rolls Series. 




Gervase. Dart, 1723, on his plan, put the three 
names — Lawrence, Gilbert, Vitalis — to the three 
existing effigies. In his text, however, he corrects 
this, and puts Humez for Vitalis as ** the western- 
most of the three.'* The names which were cut on 
the effigies about 1740 follow Dart's plan instead 
of his text. Hence most of the confusion.* 

When we find that the MS. {c. 1460) describes 
three effigies which not only correspond to those 
now existing in proper order, but that these agree 
perfectly in style with the dates which fit the 
names given in the MS., there seems to be suffi- 
cient proof that they represent the abbots as now 
follows in order from east to west : 

Lawrence J 117 S^ the most eastern effigy, in hard 
white shelly oolite, large, much worn, no mitre. 

Gilbert^ 1 1 2 1 , middle effigy, low relief in black 
marble, plainly the oldest in style, and almost 
certainly imported from Tournay ; right hand holds 
staff, no mitre, traces of a book in left hand ; his 
epitaph spoke of his learning in the seven arts, and 
some of his works still exist, 

William de HumeZy 1222, western effigy, hard 
whitish oolite, high relief, much worn, with mitre 
and fully vested ; right hand blesses, staff lies across 
body, it must have been held in left hand. The 
engravings of Dart and Gough confirm some of 
the points above suggested from an examination of 

* It is curious that Keepe should overlook the third /^^j, but in his 
MS. collection in my possession he speaks of three. Widmore pointed 
out that the effigy inscribed Vitalis is Humez. One source of the con- 
fusion is that Camden's, the earliest printed list, does not mention 
Humez at all, nor does Dingley. 


the tombs. Lawrence seems to have had his 
hands clasped on his breast. The tombs of Vitalis 
and Gervase seem to be lost. Sandford (1683) says 
that the epitaph of Gervase was in ** Saxon letters, 
nearly defaced," in black marble, and he prints it 
in what we call Lombardic capitals. Widmore 
says that he saw the name 
ABB^ WALTERIVS on the ^^L^ Xftyt^ 
wall of the south cloister, and ^"iW^ j A l-^fv^v 
only the other day for the ^^- ^^-'^^^ 
first time I noticed not far 
from the refectory door on ^'^- '^"^ ~^" ^- "^^^ 

^1 1 u -.1^ of Cloister 

the second course above the 

seat the letters ABB 3 inches high and in the 

style of the thirteenth century. (Fig. 1 20.) 

1222-46. Richard de Berkinge [was buried before 
the middle altar of the Lady Chapel under an orna- 
mental marble tomb. In the time of William of 
Colchester, a flat slab with a brass was substituted]. 
A reason for this alteration may be found in the 
making of Queen Katherine's tomb in the centre 
of the old chapel.* Keepc says that when 
Henry VIL's Chapel was built his slab was put 
at the foot of the steps of the same. Dart identifies 
it with the matrix of a brass on the right, but, as 
has been shown, this is Harowden's tomb. 1 he 
ancient slab right in the centre also has traces of a 
brass,'f and that must be Berkinge's tomb-slab. 

• At the inquiry made in 1498 as to the burial-place of Henry VI. 
it was reported that he once " went into the Lady Chapel and there 
beheld the tomb of Queen Katherine," which it was suggested should be 
put '' somedele lower/' and his own tomh put bettveen it and the altar. 

t Cf. Neale. 



1246-58. Richard Crokesley. Matthew of West- 
minster tells us that he was authorised to celebrate 
mass like a pontiff,* and that he dedicated a chapel 
of St. Edmund near the north door of the church. 
[He was buried in the chapel of 
St, Edmund, which he had made, 
but later, when that was destroyed 
at the building of the new nave, he 
was reinterred in the chapel of 
St. Nicholas, under a large slab with 
his figure, but was again shifted in 
the time of Henry VI.] In 1866 
an abbot*s coffin was found under 
the High Altar, and it is possible, 
as Stanley suggests, that this was 
Crokesley's last resting-place. 
1258-6. Philip de Lewisham. 
1259-83. Richard de Ware. 
[He was buried under the porphyry 
floor on the north side by A. de 
Valence.] This agrees exactly with 
the parallelogram of mosaic on the 
north side, which shows evidence of having had a 
strip of (presumably inscribed) brass around it ; and 
under it a coffin was found in 1866. 

1 283-1 308. Walter de Wenlock. [He was 
buried close to tixe High Altar, outside the south 
door to the feretory, under an ornamental slab.] 
This situation is exactly in front of the sedilia, 
which were probably his work. 

1308—15. Richard de Kedyngton [was buried 

• The indult of 1 246 entitling him to give episcopal blessing exists. 
" Papal Letters," Rolls Series. 

Fig. 121. — Abbot 

Ware. From his 



before the Great Altar in the lower pavement, near 
the Paschal candle, towards the south, under a slab 
with his image in pontijicalibus engraved in brass], 

1315-33. William de Curtlington [was buried 
before the altar of S. Benedict, south side of 
church, near Sir J. Shoreditch, under a slab with 
his image in pontificals engraved in brass], 

1333-44. Thomas Henley [was buried by the 
Paschal candle, but on the north side]. On the 
north side of the centre of crossing a tomb has been 
found. See Stanley's "Memorials,** ist edition. 

1 344—49. Simon Byrcheston [was buried in the 
cloister before the entance to the Chapter House, 
by the door to the dormitory, under a marble slab,] 
This part of the cloister is almost certainly his work. 
Dart says he saw the cofBn-shaped slab here, 

1349-62. Simon Langham [tomb of alabaster, 
by the altar of S. Benedict], Still existing. 

1362-86, Nicholas de Litlington [buried before 
the altar of S. Blase, under an ornamental slab : 
end of Sporley MS. Claud. A. %.'] Widmore seems 
to have seen the tomb, now unidentifiable. 

1 386-1420. William de Colchester. EfBgy 
still exists in chapel of St. John Baptist, the 
letters W and C on pillow. 

1420-40. Richard Harowden : buried outside 
south entrance to Henry VH.'s Chapel. The large 
slab with vestiges of a brass, usually said to be 
Berkinge's must be his (see p. 242 above.) 

1440-62. Edmund Kyrton, buried in S. An- 
drew's Chapel, Matrix of his brass still remains. 
See Dart, Gough, and Harding for brass. 

1462-69. George Norwich, 



1469-74. Thomas Millying : buried in chapel 
of St. John Baptist. Keepe says the tomb was 
removed on the erection here of the Exeter monu- 
ment, and suggests that the coffin now above 
Fascet's tomb may be his, but this coffin is of the 
thirteenth century. 

1474-98. John Estney : buried in chapel ot 
St. John Evangelist. Brass now in north ambu- 

1498-1500. George Fascet : tomb still in chapel 
of St. John Baptist. 

1500-33. John Islip : buried in the lower 
chapel, built by himself, as represented on the Roll 
at the Society of Antiquaries.* 

As now named the chapels may be traced back 
through Dugdale and Camden to theXVIth century. 
cT^, Then in the lists of tombs just given we 

r^L ^ I firid Little St. Mary's and S. Thomas's 
Chapels. j t^u r 

^ named. The former was, we saw, asso- 

ciated with S. John Baptist's, and the Will of 
Eleanor Bohun (before 1399) which directs that she 
shall be buried " in the Chapel of S. Edmund 
King and of S. Thomas of Canterbury " (near the 
body of her husband it proceeds) shows conclu- 
sively that S. Edmund was a second dedication 
of S. Thomas's. 

The " Customs," of Abbot Ware, mentions the 
following chapels or altars : i . The Lady Chapel ; 
2. St. Katherine's or the Infirmary Chapel ; 3. 8. 
Faith's, in charge of the Revestrar ; 4. Quire altar ; 

• For some particulars of elections of abbots see " Papal Letters," 
Rolls Series and Historical MSS., Report IV. 


5, Holy Cross altar ; 6. S. Paul's and the Crucifix 
on the Pulpitum ; 7. Old S. Mary's ; 8. Trinity ; 
9. S. Benedict's ; 10. St. Dunstan's ; 1 1. St. Law- 
rence. From many references we know that 2 was 
dedicated to S. Katherine before Henry IH. rebuilt 
the church ; 3 is evidently the vestry, and the ancient 
altar there still has a thirteenth-century painting of 
S. Faith above it ; 4 was the Matins altar under 
the lantern (see p. 21) ; 5 the Nave altar (see 
p. 26) ; 6 afterwards Jesus altar above ; 7 " by the 
north door " (sec p. 26) ; 8 Nave, south altar (see 
p. 26). Caxton says that the Confessor here saw the 
vision at this altar (Golden Legend) ; 9 as at 
present ; 10 St. Dunstan's is the chapel under the 
dormitory (see p. 162J ; St. Lawrence was probably 
a side altar in the Infirmary Chapel. 

There was an altar of St. Mary in the chapel of 
the Infirmary, and this and St. Lawrence were 
probably the altars at the ends of the side aisles. 
At the great altar of St. Katherine's were images of 
the Virgin, St. John, and St. Katherine. 

In the latter half of the fourteenth century the 
several apsidal, transeptal, and other chapels were 
refurnished and enclosed with new screens. Accord- 
ing to a document given in Stanley's " Memorials,"* 
William Sonwell fitted the chapel of St. John the 
Evangelist, and Mary of St. Paul dedicated the 
alabaster image of the Virgin in the ssme place. 
Richard Merston, prior, fitted the altar of St. Blase. 
Thomas Peverel gave the screen of St. Thomas', 
the painting at the altar of St. Benedict, the image 
of St. Mary at the foot of the tomb of Cardinal 

• Third Edition. 



Langhlm, and the altar of St, Nicholas. John 
Palmer had the screen and all that belongs to the 
altar of St. Andrew made in the time of Edward 
HI., and Edward Kirton renewed it. Roger 
Kirton and John Savary gave the altar of St. 
Michael St. Martin and All Saints and its screen. 
Brother Richard of Cirencester (the Chronicler) 
gave the painting at the altar of St. Helen's and the 


Fig. 122. — Cresting of Screen of Chapel of St. Andrew 

image of St. Mary. And J. Morton gave the 
screen of the Trinity altar and the picture of St. 

The chapels and altars mentioned here are : I 
St. Michael St. Martin and All Saints ; H. St 
John Evangelist ; HI. St. Blase ; IV. St. Helen 
V. St. Katherine ; VI. Trinity ; VII. St. Thomas 
VIII. St. Benedict; IX. St. Nicholas; X. St 

The names of altars in the middle of the 
fifteenth century may be found also in an MS. at 
the British Museum, being a list of the masses at 
the several altars. I. The great altar ; II. St. 
Trinity; III. Holy Cross; IV. Chapel of St. 
Mary ; V. Chapel of the same name by the north 


door ; VI. St. John Baptist ; VII. St. John Evan- 
gelist ; VIII. St. Paul ; IX. St. Andrew ; X. St. 
Thomas the Martyr ; XL The altar at the Shrine of 
St. Edward ; XII. St. Dunstan ; XIII. St. Martin; 
XIV. St. Nicholas ; XV. St. Blase ; XVL St. 
Benedict ; XVII. Chapel of St. Katherine ; XVIII. 
Chapel of St. Anne ; XIX. St. Helen. [IX. as at pre- 
sent ; XIII. the St. Michael St. Martin and All Saints 
of the last list, the present St. Michael ; XV. St. 
Blase was in the south-west corner of south transept 
enclosed by a screen ; XVIII. probably the St. 
Anne by the almonry of Stow ; XIX. a note in 
Leland shows that St. Helen's was in the nave, and 
from an agreement made in 1298 between the 
monastery and Master William Wendone regarding 
a priest to sing at the altars of Holy Cross and St. 
Helen we may suppose that they were together.]* 
The Suppression Inventory mentions : I. St. 
Andrew's ; 11. St. Michael's ; III. St. Nicholas' ; 
IV. St. Edward's ; V. King Henry V.'s ; VL St. 
Edmund's; VII. Lady Margaret's; VIII. St. 
John Evangelist ; IX. St. John Baptist ; X. Jesus 
Chapel beneath ; XL Jesus Chapel above ; XII. 
St. Paul's. [V. is Henry V.'s Chantry, otherwise 
Chapel of the Annunciation ; VII. In Henry VII.'s 
Chapel ; X. and XL the Nave and Rood-loft altars.] 
In the Inventory of Church Goods, (Ex. Q.R. 
1032), the last are called the Jesus Chapel and Rood 
Chapel. When Henry VII.'s Chapel was built 
its high altar retained its dedication to the Virgin. 
The Chantry altar at the king's tomb was St. 
Saviour's. The chapels round about were also 

• Heme. "Black Book of the Exchequer," p. 228. 

2 353 


prepared for altars, seven in all ; for the probable 
dedications of these, seeMr. Micklethwaite*s descrip- 
tion of the statues in Archaologta xlvii. 

In the time of Edward IV. a chapel of St. 
Erasmus had been built against the older Lady 
Chapel, and both were destroyed by Henry VII. 
Mr. Micklethwaite has suggested* that a recess 
made in the time of Richard II. between the chapels 
of the Evangelist and Baptist for a precious image, 
or "object of high value," was enlarged by Islip to 

mM % Crafmirfs 

Pig. 123. — Inscription over door of Chapel 


take the place of the destroyed chapel of St. 
Erasmus. We have seen that Mary of St. Paul, 
wife of Aymer de Valence, gave an alabaster image 
of the Virgin to the Evangelist's Chapel. Her 
will shows that she died in 1377. She left to the 
Abbot and Convent of Westminster, for the main- 
tenance of a chantry-priest in the chapel near the 
tomb of her husband, a sum of money ; also a gold 
cross with gold stand set with emeralds, which 
William de Valence had brought from the Holy 
Land, two images of St. Peter and St. Andrew, a 
gold chalice, and two tapestries of her husband's 

We have seen also that the present chapel of St. 
John Baptist, which is next to the Evangelist*s 
Chapel, was associated with a chapel called Little 

• Archaologta^ xliv. 


St. Mary in such a way that some confusion arose 
between them. I would suggest on this that the 
recess formed "about 1380" just at the back of 
the altar of St. John Evangelist was made to con- 
tain Mary of St. Paul's image of the Virgin and 
other gifts, and from the image it may have come 
to be called Little St. Mary's. It is significant 
that on the boss of the vault was carved the 
Assumption of the Virgin. The image in the 
niche had "rays from its head painted on the wall.'* 
This shows, I think, that the figure here was one 
of the Virgin. 

At the time that it was enlarged by Abbot 
Islip the piece of alabaster tabernacle-work which 
probably contained iif image of St. Erasmus and 
came from the older chapel of that name, was set 
up over the entrance. About 1 524 Bishop Routall's 
tomb was built, blocking up the old door into St. 
John Baptist's Chapel, and the little chapel was 
altered once more into a passage way, as at 
present.* I do not think that Little St. Mary's 
ever became the Chapel of St. Erasmus ; the 
inscription over the door referred more probably 
to the statue. Weever and other old writers speak 
of Islip's Chapel as that of St. Erasmus. 

Islip's own two-storey chapel took up the eastern 
half of what had been the Evangelist's Chapel. 
Above, on its east wall, are vestiges of the early 
tracery which once panelled it, like that in St. 
Benedict's Chapel opposite. It was cut away to 
take the painting shown on the Islip Roll drawing 

* Poole's suggestion as to Routall's tomb is not justified by the 
evidence. Lend, and Midx. Archseol. Soc, vol. vi. 



of this chapel, which gives an accurate represe 
tion of several features which are now lost. In 
niches of the front, for instance, are shown 
images of St. John Evangelist, St. Peter, Ch 
the Baptist, and St. Giles. 

There seem never to have been any chape 
the eastern aisle of the South Transept. This 
must have formed the usual. approach for the k 
from the palace through the small door called 
" postern " in the south-east corner of this trans 
When the earliest plans of the church were n 
the gates of the ambulatory were in the posi 
they now occupy, those to the south being one 
further east than those to the north. We 
carry this arrangement back to mediaeval days 
the evidence of the paving which follows 
arrangement, and it is probably original. 

Fig. 124 — From Marble base 
N.W. angle of Crossing, 




The word Gothic is found applied to post-Roman, pre-Renais- 
sance building, by Raphael. It is now taken to mean the 
Mediaeval architecture of Western Europe, although some writers, 
while accepting this use, try at the same time to give it a narrower 
meaning of their own. Some have seen in it the architecture of 
pointed arches, or of traceried windows, or of ribbed vaults, or of 

The word " Gothic " might be given to any of these by any 
writer ; but while the equation, Gothic=Mediaeval, stands, any 
other limitation, save by time and place, is based on misunder- 

Thus,Roman architecture is the architecture of the Roman civil- 
isation. One age has seen in it the true, the revealed architecture 
of antiquity — another the architecture of " orders " — another of 
coarse copying of Greece — another of engineering construction — 
another of modernism. These things may be characteristic, and 
one of them may be the chief characteristic, but it would be a 
misapprehension to " define " Roman architecture by any of 

If Roman architecture consisted in such externals as these we 
could easily be Roman architects ourselves. If buttresses were 
the signature of Gothic, then we have this architecture with us 
to-day. But surely Gothic architecture was not merely an affair 
of such " features " as these ; there was a Gothic life, and there 
had to be Gothic tool-strokes and Gothic mortar. There must 
have been ideas in this art which have even yet never been 
guessed at. 

It is a mistake, then, and leads to much confusion, while 
accepting the generic meaning of the word " Gothic," to make it 
fit some other narrower meaning. It is our business to measure 
phenomena, not to shape and cut them down to fit our foot- 
rules. Gothic architecture means the art of building of Western 
Europe in the Middle Ages. We also get narrow definitions 
given to the word "architecture," so that the meaning proposed 

* See Mr. Bond's fine volume, which calls for notice because it 
is so important and the most recent pronouncement on Gothic 
architecture in England. 



to be given to Gothic architecture works out something like this : 
Projects for buttressed buildings.* 

Applying the buttress test, it is said that we may include such 
things as the Eleanor Crosses as Gothic, but that is surely a mis- 
take, for these have no true buttresses, but only carved models of 
buttresses, and such Gothic as that would be only skin-deep. 
While Westminster Abbey was building Henry III. erected a 
great belfry, opposite its north front. It was a strong stunted 
tower, over 70 feet square, with never a break, and most admir- 
ably fitted for its work of carrying a great oscillating bell-cage. 
Was the church Gothic, and the belfry, built together with it, 
not Gothic ? Was Gothic art, by its essence, unfitted to deal 
with belfries and town palaces and castles ? Are the magnificent 
flat fronts of Louvain, Bruges and Ypres not Gothic ? Are 
Conway and Coucy not Gothic ? 

This buttress view of Gothic art not only confines itself to 
churches, but it is a side-elevation view even of them. It does 
little to explain the west fronts of Amiens or Reims, nothing to 
explain Rouen and Lyons, Lichfield and Peterborough. Mr. 
Bond, after having worked down his definition to the point that 
" Gothic architecture is the art of erecting buttressed buildings,*' 
and that "the universal element in Gothic is . . . the buttress,*' 
adds to his definition the words, "also of doing work which 
possesses the chief characteristics of building so constructed.** 
This saving clause just sponges out the definition into such 
vagueness that, after all, we may, as we must, call anything 
Gothic which is mediaeval. But the idea that the thing Gothic 
can be driven into definitions narrower than its whole field, leads 
to curious pitfalls of reasoning. 

But is the use of buttresses the chief characteristic of 
Mediaeval Building ? I do not think that it is even this. The 
development of buttresses followed on the developed use of the 
ribbed vault, on the concurrent growth of the window, and on 
the increasing display of stained glass. As to this last, if we take 
the most perfectly adjusted works, like the Ste. Chapelle, or St. 
Urbain at Troyes, we find that the stained glass gives one 
dominating reason for the far-projecting exterior buttresses. 
Had it not been for the stained-glass ideal, which necessitated that 
the plane of the glass should be kept near the inner surface of the 
bearing masonry^ so that its imagery should not be hid in a raking 
view, we can hardly conceive that the windows would not have been 

* Bond, pp. 2 and 11. 



put flush with the outer face of the buttresses which would have 
disappeared, and that, instead of them, we should have had large 
respond-piers in the interior, and thereby gained greater space with 
equal structural outlay. 

The buttress was never an end in itself, in one sense it was 
only a symptom, but of course its use did react on the possibilities 
within the reach of the true controlling ideal of the mediaeval 
masons, and great y7y/«^ buttresses are perhaps the most specialised 
features of High Gothic. The controlling ideal was not the 
vault merely, or the window, or, least of all, the buttress — but 
all of these, and more than all, together. It was the ideal of the 
most energetic construction. It was the endeavour after that 
ultimate " proportion " conditioned by exploring the most that 
may be done by balancing stones one upon another. This 
is what Morris named organic building. It is what the old 
masons' books seem to mean by geometry, that is, the laws 
of structure. It is what Villars de Honnecourt called bonne 
fna^nnerie. Gothic architecture was the art of the craftsmens' 


It was Scott's view that the Westminster windows were the 
earliest of their kind in England. Mr. Bond, while admitting 
that we followed France in this particular, claims that im- 
portant windows at Binham, old St. Paul's, and Netley were 
anterior to those at Westminster. Geometrical tracery of this 
kind, he says, came into use ^^ not later than 1240 in Binham, 
Netley, and old St. Paul's." The Presbytery of old St. Paul's, he 
says, was consecrated in 1240. From Hollar's etchings we know 
that the eastern limb of the Cathedral had fine traceried windows 
of three, four, and five lights, which look almost Decorated in 
type. Can such windows have been built before 1240 ? Turn- 
ing to Dugdale we find that, at St. Paul's, a new choir, together 
with a central steeple, was begun in 1221 and perfected in 1240. 
The choir-stalls were being made in 1236. Can one suppose 
that such windows were built about 1230 ? I think not. Now 
Dugdale tells how a great extension of the Cathedral was begun 
in 1256, covering the ground of St. Faith's Church, and called in 
a contemporary document, " the new work at the head of the 
church." The main brunt, he says, of this work was over by 
1283, but it was not till 1312 that the pavement of this new 
work was made. There is no distinction to be observed in the 



windows of the eastern limb of St. Paul's, and we must suppose 
that they all belong to the period 1256-83. 

As to the east window of Netley, which Mr. Bond says was 
begun in 1239, there seems to be evidence, on the illustration 
given on his p. 471, that it was an insertion, and Mr. St. John 
Hope tells me that he noted many years ago that it had been cut 
into earlier work. The windows at Winchester Hall are also 

Now for Binham. Its west window is a very fine work 
of eight lights having cusped heads^ as well as developed tracery, 
which I think we should all date, on its merits, as built about 
1260-70, and Mr Bond remarks how closely it resembles the 
east window of Lincoln, which he dates after 1256, and before 
1288, and supposes may have been derived from Binham — yet its 
lights are uncusped. Of Binham, Matthew of Paris says that Prior 
Richard, 1226-44, built the front of the church to the roof. Are 
we compelled to think that this great window in an out-of-the- 
way Priory is earlier than the windows of Westminster ? I do 
not think so. The front may have been rebuilt after the time of 
Matthew of Paris or, more likely, it may not be the West Front 
which was in question. At the time Matthew of Paris wrote it 
was the custom to call the east end of a church the front, and, 
within a few lines, in the poetic description of Westminster, 
written c. 1270, we find these two phrases : Of the apse — " Le 
frunt vers orient fait rund'* ; of the Chapter House — " Cloistre 
i fait, chapter a frunt vers orient vousi et rund." 


The work at Westminster exercised an enormous influence 
upon subsequent buildings in England. Its erection marks the 
close of the lancet, and the opening of the geometrical period. 

Of direct imitations the most complete, as regards the plan, at 
least, was Hayles Abbey, the foundations of which have lately 
been uncovered. The chevet of this church was begun in 127 1, 
and as it was built at the cost of the brother of Henry III., it is 
likely, I think, that Robert de Beverley, the mason at West- 
minster at this time, may have given a draft for it. The radiat- 
ing chapels at the not far-distant Abbey of Tewkesbury were 
probably, in turn, derived from Hayles. Tewkesbury also con- 
tains some "triangular " windows like those in the nave of West- 
minster, and similar windows, clearly derived from our Abbey, are 
to be found at Lichfield and Hereford. 


The eastern wall of the great new work begun at St. Paul's 
in 1256 was, as already remarked, modelled on the transept ends 
of Westminster. A similar great extension at Lincoln, begun 
about the same time, shows in its splendid sculptured south porch, 
the finest now in England, a study of the north portal at the 
Abbey. At Lincoln the tympanum is filled by a very noble 
Majesty in a quatrefoil, beneath which is sculptured the separation 
of the just and the unjust, a subject which we have independently 
shown probably filled the Westminster tympanum. 

The west door of Lichfield seems, in turn, to derive from 

This last of the series has on each hand of the Majesty an 
angel, one carries the cross and the other a spear. Amiens, 
which stands at the head of the series, has also two angels carrying 
the cross and spear. If we' turn back to Lincoln we find on the 
cast of the unrestored Majesty now at South Kensington two 
angels the hands of which are broken, but they obviously held 
instruments of the Passion ; the action of Christ who points to His 
wounds requires as much, although by an unhappy restoration the 
angels now carry censers. At Westminster too we may conclude 
that there were similar angels. 

At Salisbury the Cloister and Chapter House were evidently 
inspired by those at Westminster. In the Chapter House, even 
minute points, like the carved extensions of the capitals of the 
stalls back to the wall, may be traced to this source. 

Minor instances of affiliation are too numerous to mention ; 
two of the most striking are part3 of the west front of 
Dunstable, and the well-known case of Stone Church, Kent. 


In old schools of architecture the use of iron and wood ties 
for binding arches was quite general. The most important 
Byzantine buildings — S. Sophia, Constantinople, and S. Demetrius, 
Salonika — have such ties throughout. Of the early Arabic school, 
the Dome of the Rock and the Aksa mosque have a series of ties 
at the springing of the arches. In Lombard buildings we find 
iron ties used even across external porch arches. At Borgo San 
Donnino the tie is shaped like that shown in Fig. 62. Our text 
sufficiently speaks of Gothic tie-bars in France and England. 
The Dean's porch at Lincoln has an external tie-bar. In Italy 
ties continued to be used through the Mediaeval and Renaissance 




Of France we are told that " this word did not come into use 
until the sixteenth century. Before then they only knew of the 
master of the tuorksy the master of works of masonry or of carpentr)\ 
It was these who drew the plans, made the estimate and bought 
materials. . . . The mason Raymond du Temple, who rebuilt 
the Louvre in 1365, was called maitre des otuvrts de mafonnerie de 
monseigneur le roi.*^ His son Jean was "master of works of 
masonry to the church of Paris." "The word architect first 
appears in 1510." • That is in a professional sense; it is 
occasionally found before that time used in a somewhat rhetorical 
way in documents written in Latin. 

One of the great features of mediaeval civilisation was the 
winning of a position for the crafts. In the earlier Middle Ages 
I suspect that persons of the order of prefects of palaces, sacristans 
of abbeys, and the like, had to know a good deal about the prac- 
tice of building, and prepared the rough outlines of schemes, calling 
on servile labour for the customary execution of the same ; this 
customary execution must have included all that we call style. 
Yet neither those who ordered or those who wrought thought of 
that. The position occupied to-day by many an active steward, 
estate agent, factor, or clerk of woiks represents very well the 
conditions as to direction of works. 

At the beginning of our enquiry it seems likely that we find 
such a person in Alnoth, the " ingeniator " (p. 105); although 
there is no reason why he should not have been a mason by 
training, I am not convinced that so he was. 

We get an interesting indication of a transitional stage in the 
naming in 1237 of an early master of Henry IIL's, John of 
Waverley, mason (p. 115), as "brother." In 1231 an important 
work had just been completed at the Cistercian Abbey of Wavtrley, 
and it seems probable that John had been in charge. The early part 
of the thirteenth century was the central moment of change in 
England from monastic to lay art. Master John is, I think, the 
last monastic mason we hear of in connection with the king*s 
work ; but a generation later Master William of Westminster was 
the king's chief painter, and the most famous artist of the time 
was Walter of Colchester, a monk of St. Albans. As late as c. 1 290 
.a monk of Bury was painter to Edward I. (p. 275). The lay 
mni5w,(e|.s more and more took the place of the monastic artists, and 

^ * A. Franklin, " Diet. Hist, dcs Arts," 1905. 


only the two mentioned above have I found named in the West- 
minster accounts. 

In this generation much has been made of Elyas of Dereham 
as a supposititious architect, Just as in the last generation much 
was said of William of Wykeham, but it may be questioned 
whether one more than the other was a true master builder. Elyas 
was canon of Salisbury at the time the new Cathedral was begun, 
and before that time had been keeper of the works for Henry III. 
at Winchester, He doubtless had a good deal of experience of 
building and a very pretty taste, and may from the employing 
side have had a good deal to do with the ^^ design " of Salisbury, 
just as Henry III, probably had a good deal to say on the "design'* 
of Westminster, but that he was in a special sense an architect 
has been too readily accepted on Walpole's identification of him 
with Elyas, ingeniator at the Tower, in 1209 it was said ; but, as 
Brailey has pointed out, the date should be 11 99, 10 R. I. 
instead of 10 John. 

As Elyas of Dereham lived until 1245 ^^^ Elyas was a common 
name, the identification is most unlikely to be true. 


It was the custom to appoint official masons and carpenters as 
surveyors to report on questions of encroachment, party-walls, 
and the like. 

In the middle of the fourteenth century there were two of 
each trade. In 1 300-1 Richard de Wytham was sworn as 
surveyor of stone party-walls and of work proper to a mason, and 
Robert Osekin and John Writele, carpenters, were sworn to 
survey work in their trade.* Writele died in 1305. 

In 1309 Master Reginald de Swafham was sworn as surveyor 
of tenements "as far as pertained to the trade of a carpenter, 
according to the custom of the city." f Master Reginald died 
in 13 14. The year before Master Simon de Pabenham and 
Master Alexander de Canterbury, mason, and Master Robert 
de Northampton, carpenter, were "sworn to make partition of 
tenements in the city," and acted with the Chamberlain in such a 
survey. Some years later, in 1320, Adam de Rothynge held the 
office. He and Katherine his wife lived in St. Martin's-in-the- 
Vintry. In 1325 John de Totenham was sworn in his place.^ 

• Dr. Sharpens Letter Book C. 

t Letter Book E. t IbU. 



Forty years later a John de Totenham (perhaps a son) was city 
carpenter. In 1363 he and Richard de "Salopia,'' carpenters, and 
Richard de Salynge (see p. 196) and Richard at Cherche, masons^ 
were sworn as surveyors. 

In 1367 the same carpenters, with Richard at Cherche and 
Thomas Barnet, masons, were "sworn in fall hustings." 

In 1369 the sworn carpenters were Richard "Shropshire" and 
Thomas Frant, and the sworn masons as last. In the next year 
the same four petitioned to be made free from taxes, as their pre- 
decessors in office had been for a hundred years. This was granted, 
as long as they remained in office.* 

The number of names in this list, prepared on independent 
lines, of masons and carpenters whom we have found connected 
with the works at Westminster shows that in our enquiry as to 
those works we have become acquainted with many of the best 
craftsmen of the city in the Middle Ages. 


Fresh explanations of the meaning of freemason are frequently 
being made. The two latest that I have seen are that the name 
took its rise from untaxed imported stone, or from masons of free 
condition. The evidence, however, points to the name being 
derived from free-working stonc,f and it was applied to the 
hewers in distinction to the setters or wallers. In the West- 
minster accounts of 1253 ^^^^ distinction between the white-stone 
cutters and layers already exists. See also our p. 204. 

Several seals of craftsmen of Middle Ages have been preserved. 
The earliest mason's seal I have found is that of Walter Dixy of 
Barnwell (Cambs.). It is appended to a deed of 13 12, and has 
the device of a mallet between a moon and a star, and about it S 
[igillum] WALTER LE MASON. There is no certain record of the 
establishment of the Masons' Guild in London, but it was in 
existence, and received an official grant of arms in 1473. 'The 
arms were a pair of compasses on a chevron between three castles, 
a coat which is sometimes found on masons' tombs : recently I 
saw one such mason described a " gentleman of coat armour." 

In certain returns made in 1376 as to the numbers and members 

• Letter Book G. 

t Skeat gives free cutting as the meaning of freestone. In 1332 I 
find Lidera Petra (Freestone) mentioned, and in 1311 Franca Petra, 


of the several guilds returnable to the Common Council^ the 
masons are said to be entitled to four and the freemasons to two. 

We have seen them acting together as a corporation in the years 
13 1 5 and 1356 ; and as far back as we can trace the tit^e 
** master " it seems that we may infer some sort of guild which 
conferred ihat mastership. In the fifteenth century there were 
yearly congregations of masters. In late days there was a 
separate marblers' guild. 

The carpenters of London received a charter of incorporation in 
17 Hen. IV. The names of the wardens of the guild are known 
from 1438) and the names of the masters from 1457. (See Jupp's 
" Carpenters* Company.") 

The joiners are found acting as a corporation in 1309. (See 
Riley's ** Memorials.") For the whole company of the black- 
smiths see our p. 307. For the Painters' Guild see end note. 


In the Pipe Roll account for 1269-70 an item occurs for wax 
and pitch for making cement, and similar items occur more than 
once in the accounts for the Palace. In one instance, in 1324-7, 
6olbs. of pitch were bought for cement, and 100 Flanders tiles to 
be pulverised for the same cement. In the book of Villars dC 
Honnecourt we have a recipe for such a cement given in full : 

^^Take lime and pounded pagan (Roman) tile in equal quantities, 
adding a little more of the latter until its colour predominates. 
Moisten the cement with oil, and with it you can make a vessel 
(tank) that will hold water." Willis compares this with the 
" Mastic de dilh," whatever that may be. The recipe given by 
Villars is, I suppose, derived from the East, where, from early 
days, they have used a waterproof cement made of unslaked lime, 
crushed brick, filaments of cotton for binding, and linseed oil. 
Pliny mentions quicklime and oil used together. 


This volume, from the Phillipps Collection, is entitled "The 
History of St. Peter's, or Westminster Abbey, continued, being 
the eleventh and twelth chapters thereof . . . mdclxxx." 
Written in another hand is "Exlibris Stephani Bateman,^ 
Interioris Templi, 1698." Collation with H. Keepe's "Monas- 
1," published in 1683, shows that the two have much 



in common, as well in exact similarity of passages as in the scope 
and the order of arrangement. Keepe, who was of the Inner 
Temple, and died in 1688, had ^^ projected a splendid edition " of 
his Westminster Collections parallel to Dugdale's St. Paul's, but 
he foiled in getting it taken u^ and had to content himself with 
the small volume.* I have no doubt that my heraldic MS. 
formed part of this Collection. 

The inscription on the screen before the Chapel of St. Andrew's 
is given as follows : 

Hoc Tibi Mcmoria Sacristc Kyrton et ora 
Ut fecit Spina Rosam Profert in Dea Maria 
Hoc opui it Fecit et Sic Ornando Peregit. 

SibI post elega succedant Celica Regna 
Esto Flos Floruniy Mortis Medicina ReorZ 
M : ctra Cent : Sexto Septcm Tcret. 


The heraldry of the church would form a magnificent "roll of 
arms " of the best period. The English coat on the chapter house 
tiles is dated, as we have shown, c. 1258. The sculptured set of 
shields in the choir aisles are of incomparable excellence, and are 
of about the same period. The tombs of Alianor, of William de 
Valence, and of Edmund Crouchback furnish a long series of 
shields designed at just the turn of the thirteenth century. Those 
on tombs of Aymer de Valence, John of Eltham, Queen Philippa, 
and Edward III., all of the fourteenth century, are also models of 
heraldic style. The inimitable quality of these old charges came 
first from the spirit in which they were devised for a purpose, and 
from their perfect adjustments of drawing developed by frequent 
repetition. The beasts are marvels of fancy, and have little 
relation to the waddling lions and boiled eagles of modern 

The carved shields of the choir aisles were eight in number on 
each side, and they reached as far as Henry III.'s work extended. 
After the nave was completed the series was continued in painting 
to the west end, all being coats of the period of Henry III. 
Above these, and above the carved shields, the names of those 
who once bore them were painted. See those of the two west 
bays on the south side. This was done, I think, by Abbot 
Feckenham, who painted so many inscriptions in the Confessor's 


* Diet. Nat. Biog. 


Chapel, and the painted arms of the nave ' may have been done 
at the same time. Keepe took his identifications of the shields 
from these inscriptions in "ancient English letters." 

Two of the sculptured shields, those of Scotland and de Bohun, 
were displaced early in the eighteenth century, and are lost ; the 
rest are preserved, even when shouldered out of their places by 
intruding monuments. The series includes the shields of the 
great barons of the kingdom at a most interesting moment. So 
far as I have been able to trace them, they were all living about 
1255, and many of them signed the Provisions of Oxford in 1259. 
The shields cannot refer to a period later than this when the 
barons were in revolt. In 1265 Simon de Montford, whose arms 
are on the north side, was slain. The sixteen early shields (two 
in each bay) as traditionally assigned were : 


The Empire 
or Germany 

S. Louis of 

First Bay 

Richd. de Clare 

E. of Gloucester 
Roger Bigod 
E. of Norfolk 


Second Bay 


King Edward 
the Confessor 

Henry III. 
of England 

tAlexander III. 
of Scotland 
Provence for 
Queen of H. III. 




Simon de Montford 
E. of Leicester 

John de Warrenne 
E. of Surrey 

tHumph. de Bohun 
E. of Hereford 
Will, de Fortibus 
E. of Albemarle 


Third Bay 


Fourth Bay 


Roger de Quincey 
E. of Winchester 

Henry de Lacy 
E. of Lincoln 

Richard Earl of 

R. Earl of 


Why is not the coat of Castile and Leon here, since Edward 
married Alianor in 1253.? Why is there no coat for Edward 
himself? Why does Germany appear as well as Cornwall, since 
Richard of Cornwall was himself elected Emperor in 1257 •'' On 
consideration of these points, I am inclined to refer back the 
choice of these arms to a still earlier period, and to suggest that 
they represent those who were in some way associated with the 
building of the new work in 1245 or 1258. (See bottom of p. 156.) 



The earliest drawings I have seen of these shields are those in 
a heraldic MS. bjr Joseph Holland, dated 1585. They are there 
said to be ^^ of benefiictors towards the building of part of the 
said church." 

Many early coats of arms which have disappeared from the 
tombs are tricked in the Collection of the " Lancaster Herald '* 
(Lansd. MSS. 874). First comes a series undescribed, which 
were probably in the windows ; then those on the screen in St. 
Andrew's Chapel, also undescribed, but I identify them from my 
own MS., where they are also drawn ; then follow the arms on 
the tombs of Crouch back, of William dc Valence, of Aymer de 
Valence, of Edward III., and of Queen Philippa, also those on 
many of the later monuments. In the Powell Collection at the 
British Museum some of the shields are more carefully drawn. 


The earliest abbey seal is found on documents of the time of 
Abbot Herbert, c. 1130. In an oval, St. Peter, keys in hand, sits 
on a throne, his feet resting on a prostrate figure which must 
represent Nero. After the canonisation of the Confessor, 1169, 
a new seal was made, which appears on documents dated from 
1201 to 1537. This is round ; St. Peter, in mitre and pallium, 
keys in one hand, crozier in the other, is figured as before with his 
feet on Nero. The reverse shows the Confessor enthroned, holding 
a sceptre and a church in his hands, and with a prostrate figure, 
who must represent the King of the Danes, under his feet. A late 
impression of this seal (Egerton Charters, 361) is still beautifully 
sharp, and shows it to have been a very fine work ; the St. Peter 
is especially noble. The earliest existing personal seal is that of 
Abbot Ware. A pointed oval with a beautiful figure of a mitred 
abbot, on either side of whom are heads of the Confessor and the 
Pilgrim. There is another seal of Harowden, with SS. Peter, 
John and Katharine in niches, the abbot praying below. A 
somewhat similar seal belonged to Islip. The seals of the 
sacristan, John Amundisham(i454),and the chamberlain, Thomas 
Brown (1509), are also preserved. They show St. Peter and the 
Confessor in tabernacles. The tombs of these two monks are in 
the North Ambulatory. 




From the sixteenth century, at least, this mysterious stone has 
been shown as Jacob's Pillow, L. von Widel, who visited the 
Church in 1584-5, says, " In the choir a chair was shown to us 
in which all the English kings were crowned. In this chair is 
enclosed a stone on which Jacob is said to have rested. On one 
sepulchre there was a sword twelve spans long, and of mighty 
weight, which belonged to King Ilwardus" [Edward III.].* 

Volumes of matter have been written on this stone. In 1324 
Robert Bruce appealed to Edward II. that the Scots might have 
restored to them the celebrated stone which King Edward, senior, 
had placed near the tomb of St. Edward. Scota, the daughter of 
Pharaoh, had brought it from Egypt, and gave her name to the 
land which was before called Albania [Albion], and Moses had 
foretold that victory should follow the stone.f 

Edward II. refused to give up what his father had taken as the 
best token of his victory, although an agreement was entered 
into in 1328 that it should be restored. The prophecy of Moses 
must be a reference to the well-known lines given by Fordun, c, 
1388, as to the stone having "such a fatal destiny that, wherever 
it should be found, there should Scottish men reign." 

It has been said that, according to Irish traditions, this stone is 
Lia Fail, the stone of Fate or Virtues, " now in the throne upon 
which is proclaimed the King of the Saxons." t But this does not 
appear to be the fact. Yet comparison with the Irish stone fully 
explains the legends which gather around the stone now at West- 
minster. We are told that the Lia Fail had the magic property of 
uttering a human cry when touched by the rightful King of Erin.§ 

In an Irish version of Giraldus Cambrensis, which has some 
additional matter, is told how "the king [Henry II.] left Ireland 
and went to the city of St. David ; and there happened to be on 
the north side of the church a stone, called the Speaking Stone, 
like unto the Lia Fail which is in Tara, ten foot in length . • • 
A dead body was brought to the Speaking Stone, and it spake 
thereunder . . . Merlin promised that that stone would speak 
under him who should conquer Ireland. The king went to it ; 
but it did not speak under him, so he was displeased." 

♦ Royal Hist. See. Trans., vol. ix. N.S. 

t Chrons. Eds. I. and II., Rolls Series. 

t Nutt's " Studies in the Holy Grail," p. 184. 

§ Sec Squire, " Mythology of the British Islands," p- 7 1 . 

2 A 369 


Mr. Whitley Stokes, who edits this fragment, remarks that the 
Lia Fail, or Stone of Ireland, was evidently still at Tara when 
the passage was written in the fifteenth century, and refers to 
O'Curry's lectures (p. 6i8) for the Irish legends.* It is clear that 
in Ireland, in Wales, and in Scotland, there was said to be a 
prophetic stone, with the guardianship of which the welfare of the 
ruler was bound up. The Coronation Stone is the Speaking 
Stone of Scone. 

If a similar legend had become attached to London Stone in 
Cannon Street, that would well account for the curious scene 
reported of Jack Cade by Shakespeare. Perhaps, however, know- 
ing the legend of the Coronation Stone, the Pretender only for the 
moment applied it to the City Stone. 


In the portraits of Henry VII. and Henry VIII., once at 
Whitehall, of which the finished cartoon is preserved at Chats- 
worth, the head of Henry VII. so closely resembles that of 
Torregiano's effigy of the king that I have no doubt that Holbein 
studied the statue for his purpose. 

Miss Mary Hervey, in her interesting book on Holbein's famous 
picture of the Amba%$ador$ at the National Gallery, pointed out, as 
said on p. 312, that the mosaic floor on which the ambassadors seem 
to stand is a representation of that at the Abbey. Accepting this 
fact, we may reach a fuller interpretation of the picture. The 
inscription on the pavement itself stated that it contained a com- 
putation of the term of the world's existence — *' containing a 
discourse of the world's continuance," as Weever puts it. Now 
Holbein's picture was painted in London in 1533, and at this 
time, when the traditions of the Abbey were unbroken, we cannot 
doubt that the wonderful prophetic pavement was pointed out to 
every visitor. 

We may assume that Holbein consciously made use of this as 
a symbol of Time on which to stand his two ambassadors, who 
were engaged on the afiairs which make history, in this great 
culminating year of the break with Rome and Anne Boleyn's 
divorce. The mysterious picture itself, it is evident, requires 
supplementary explanation, and the one which seems to stand out 
by itself by the statement of the facts, falls in perfectly with the 

♦ " Eng. Hist. Review," 1904. 


fashion of the time, shown in such works as DQrer's Melancholia 
and Holbein*s own Dance of Death. 

On the mosaic of Time a double-staged table carries the several 
instruments of science and art. On the upper stage they are 
mostly astronomical, and here is a celestial globe. Below are 
books, a musical instrument, compasses, and a terrestrial globe. 
The stand with its contents, against which the ambassadors lean, 
forms a symbol of human knowledge. Right in front, above the 
floor, is a curious distorted skull, which is set at an angle to the 
pavement, like that of a gnomon to a dial. Death throws its shadow 
on Time, and it is not without reason that its shadow is out of 
relation to the others in the picture. 

In the summer of 1775 tapestries which had covered the tombs 

of the Presbytery were removed, and the' paintings on these tombs 

and the sedilia were at once copied for, and published by. Sir Joseph 

Ayloffe. These copies are now in the library of the Society of 

Antiquaries, and are of such a character that they could have been 

drawn only by two men then in England, John Carter and William 

Blake ; and it is to the latter, I think, that we may assign them. 

Blake was apprenticed to Basire, the engraver, from 1771 to 1778 

(age 14-21). In 1773 he was sent by his master to draw in the 

Abbey, and for years he was engaged in drawing "all the mediaeval 

tombs." " In the winter the youth helped to engrave selections 

from these Abbey studies . . . the prentice work as assistant to 

Basire of these years may be traced under Basire*s name in 

Archseologia, &c. ... In the Sepulchral Monuments (Gough, 

1796) occurs a capital engraving of Queen Philippa from her 

monument, with the inscription: Basire delineavity for which, 

as in many other cases, we may safely read IV. Blake.^^ ♦ Now, 

the drawings of which we have spoken are signed: "Basire, 1775." 

And the engravings from these drawings are signed : " J. Basire 

del. etsc, 1780." 


My last word must be on this most important of all considera- 
tions in regard to the fabric, and I venture here to set down 
a summary of the conclusions I have reached. 

I. Not one more monument or memorial window should be 
erected. A single one, in every case, seems a small matter, but 
the cumulative result of even those set up in the last generation 

♦Gilchrist's "Life of Blake." 



is disastrous. All compromises on this question are vain. Little 
marble discs and busts seem to disfigure the interior almost more 
than great statues in court dress. Hardly can the student 
protect himself from these new distractions. One cannot sec the 
church for the monuments, nor the monuments for the sombre 
stained glass, nor the stained glass for the soot. There must 
surely come a revulsion in favour of daylight ; as it is, an enormous 
quantity of gas, that most destructive agent, has to be burned. 
My friend, Mr. S. C. Cockerell, has suggested to me that the best 
form of a memorial would be to cut names on the pavement slabs 
of the nave and cloister. I feel that the inclusion in such a list, 
ever growing longer in due sequence, would be a finer thing in 
itself, and the list more interesting to follow, than any addition 
of disparate and scattered monuments. 

2. The church, within and without, should be kept continu- 
ously in the most perfect repair. As to this, it may be pointed 
out that the fissure on the west side of the north transept, 
which has existed for twenty years, must be harmful to the body 
of the wall. As Mr. Morris says in his little volume on the care 
of the church : " You cannot restore it, you can preserve it. 
The structural stability having been secured, the Abbey should 
be kept clean, and otherwise not be touched at all." This keep- 
ing clean would be one factor in preservation, for the film of 
matter which collects over all surfaces exposed in London is very 
destructive. I must here repeat what I have said as to the 
necessity of putting a protective skin of lime-wash over the whole 
exterior stone-work. Examination of ancient masonry like the 
west front and sculptures of Wells Cathedral, and the rich south 
porch of Lincoln, shows that in the Middle Ages it was cus- 
tomary so to protect masonry. Of course, if the church were 
whitened all at once it would seem somewhat shocking, but there 
is no need of this, if it were done gradually and with a yellow 
toned wash ; and the portions dohe would soon recover their 
mellowness. The various textures would appear through the film 
with even enhanced value ; compare the vaulted passages entering 
east from Dean's Yard. 

3. Whatever we do, much will necessarily decay — paintings, 
carvings, pavements, are quickly fading and wearing away from 
sight and memory ; and a part of any general scheme of preservation 
must include the recording of all these things, beginning with 
those that are likely to be most fugitive, the last traces of painting 
especially. For instance, the thirteenth-century figure of St. 
Faith has never yet been copied. To restore these things is to 


substitute a copy for what remains of an original, but to copy it is 
to preserve a faithful record of it, while leaving the original 
untouched, which will carry on its interest until it fades to a mere 
shadow. Which will the next generation most thank us for ? 
Even valuable manuscript sources for the history of the church 
yet remain unpublished, such as "Fabric Rolls,*' and "Flete*s 
Lives of the Abbots.*' 



Mr. Bond gives with reserve a class of plans having ambulatories 
but no chapels, and instances St. Bartholomew's, Smithfield, and 
Worcester. Remains of chapels at the former still exist, and there 
is evidence, I believe, for those at Worcester. 


The choir vaults of Westmmster may be the earliest in Eng- 
land with subdivided cells. The choir vault at Lincoln, I am 
convinced, is not of St. Hugh's work, and is not so much a step 
towards subdivided vaults as an attempt to make all the compart- 
ments harmonise with the first (sexpartite) bay in having six half 
ribs. The vault of Lichfield, south transept, which is also men- 
tioned as an early example of this type, is much later than the 
transept itself. At Amiens the church of St. Anne, as well as the 
cathedral, has a vault of this kind. 

THE SHRINE (p. 293). 

In 1242 a mandate was issued that Edward, the King's Clerk, 
should have money for the shrine, and for the liveries of the gold- 
smiths working on it, and for the marble work. This last must 
have been set aside. 

THE DORMITORY (p. 199). 

This building was again burnt in 27 Hen. VI. The present roof 
must be part of the repairs. 




In 1438 John Goulding, disposer and surveyor of the King's 
works at the Palace and the Tower : also John Whattley. 

GLASS-MAKING (p. 304), 
Thos. Glaswryghte mentioned 1355. 


Master Adam, the Painter, is mentioned in 13 12 and 13 13 
(Letter Books E and D). Amongst the names of those sworn in 
1328 into the divers Misteries of London, for the government and 
instruction of the same, were the painters Robt. le Davy, Henry 
de Denecoumbe, William de Porkle, and Richard de Stockwell 
(Letter Book E). 



Abbey buildings and precincts, 

Abbey Church. Date of building, 
I, 152 ; dimensions, 2, 127, 128 ; 
best view of interior, 4; paint- 
ing of interior, 29, 30; lighting 
of, 10, II, 19, 21, 34, 35, 109; 
rose decoration in, 49 ff ; 
pageants at, 34, 35 ; history of, 
94 ff; foundation of, 96; cost 
of works, 153, 154, 173 ; state 
at death of Henry III., 198 ; 
fire at, 199 ; re-building after 
fire, 199 ff ; sculpture at, 241 ff ; 
windows of, 303 ff ; influence of, 

Abbots, 95 ff ; abbots' graves, 
344 ff ; abbots' seals, 368 

Alianor Crosses, 174 ff, 245 

Altars, II, 14, 26, 107, 108; high 
altar, 15 ; frontal of, 16 ; re- 
table of, 263 

Amiens, likeness to Westminster, 
79, 85, 123 ff, 128 

Architects, mediaeval, 362 

Arch ornament, 137, 138 

Belfry, 56 ff, 155 

Bells, 56 ff, 114, 156 

Buttresses, 78, 80, 84, 86, 87, 139 

Chapels, construction of, 127 ; 
identification of, 350 ff ; various 
chapels, 29, 32, 244, 283, 355; 
chapel of St. Faith, 29, 55, 243, 
244, 260; chapel of St. Kathe- 
rine, 104 ff 

Lady Chapel (old), 107, 141 ff, 
161 ; Lady Chapel (Henry 
Vn.), 14, 222 ff; sculptures 
of, 229 ff ; construction of, 
230 ff ; screen of, 232 ; 

Chapels — (continued) 

glazing of, 237 ff ; painting 

in, 259 
Chapter House, painting of, 30, 

47, 276, 282 ; vestibule of, 42 ; 
description of, 43 ff; roof of, 
44 ; vaulting of, 44, 45 ; sculp- 
tures of, 45, 46, 155, 241 ff; 
arcade of, 46; tiles of, 47, 

48, 7S> 163; lectern for, 155, 

Chevet, 87, 141 ff 

Choir, 23 ; stalls of, 23 ; tapestries 

in, 24, 25 ; exterior of, 89 
Cloister, 37 ff, 42, 155, 159, 201 ff 
Confessor and Pilgrim, Story of, 

56 ; representations of, 10, 25, 

48, 56, 247, 25s, 271, 303 
Confessor's Chapel, 9 ff; altar of 

relics in, 11, 14; mosaic floor of, 

14, 327 ff ; screen of, 20, 21 ; 

shrine in, 169, 293-296; mosaic 

basement of, 319 ff 
Confessor's Church, 98 ff, 373 
Coronation Chair, 18 ; painting of, 

265 ff ; design of, 297 
Coronation Stage and Crossing, 21, 

22, 23 
Coronation Stone, 369 ff 
Course of Henry IIL's work, 145 ff, 

166, 167 

Dormitory, 55, 373 

Eleanor Crosses (see Alianor) 
Epiuphs, Royal, 332 ff 

Fabric Accounts, 113, 114 {note), 

Freemasons, 364 
French Influence, 73 ff, 79, 85, 99, 

icx), 115 ff 



Glass, 29 ; in cloister, 37, 38 ; 299 ff 
Gifts of Edward I., 10; Henry 

III., 10, no. III, 114, 156; 

Richard II., 10, 205 
Gothic Architecture, 357 
Guilds, 364 

Heraldry, 6, 301, 364, 365-368 

JuMifecES, Likeness of Confessor's 
Church to, 100 

King's Mason and Carpenter, 112 ff 

Lantern, 90, 91, 144 

Missal, Abbot Litlington's, 280 ff 
Mouldings, 131 ff 

Nave, 27 ; chapels in, 28 ; exterior 
of, 88; completion of, 204; 
windows, of, 303 

Norman buildings, 102 ff 

Organs, 26, 27 

Painting, 29, 30-34 ; of altar panel, 
15 ; of Sedilia panels, 19 ; in 
cloister, 37 ; of Chapter House, 
42, 47 ; of portrait of Richard XL, 
24, 278 ff ; of retable, 263 

Paving of Henry III.'s work, 29 ; 
mosaic pavement, 309 ff, 370 

Pear trees, planted near church, 2 

Pillars, 136 ff 

Presbytery, 18 ; mosaic floor in, 
18, 309 ff; tombs in, 18, 19; 
Sedilia in, 19; tomb of Sebert 
in, 19 ; painting of, 19, 30 

Preservation of Church, 372 

Pulpitum, 26 

Refectory, 55 

Reims, likeness of Westminster to, 

73, 116 ff 
Repair, 91 ff 

Restoration, 63 ff, 72, 76 ff, 227 ff, 

Reuble, 263 ff 
Rood, 16 ; nave rood, 26, 27 
Rose decoration, 49-54 

Sacristy, 157 

Sainte Chapelle, influence of, 121 ff, 
190, 208 

Sanctuary, 57, 58, 59, 65 

Screens, of Confessor's Chapel, 20, 
21, 209 ; of Henry VII.'s Chapel, 
232 ; colouring on screens, 31, 

Seals, 287, 248, 368 
Sedilia, 19, 247, 271 ff 
Shrine of Confessor, 9 ff , 169, 293- 

296 ; mosaic basement of, 319 ff ; 


Testers, 14, 16, 19, 22, 177 
Ties, iron, 139 ff ; wooden, 145, 361 
Tomb of Alianor, li, 14, 30, 34, 35, 
177, 237, 261 ff, 284, 286, 

287, 305, 331 
Aveline, 182, 184, 246, 249, 

267, 270 
Bishop Colchester, 30 
Edward Crouchback, 182, 246, 

269, 270 
Edgitha, 10 
Edward I., 11, 329, 338 
Edward III., 11, 288, 289, 332 
John of Eltham, 248 
Henry III., 11, 284 ff, 326, 327, 

and Chantry of Henry V., 14, 

32, 207 ; sculptures of, 254 if; 

iron grate of, 306, 331 
Henry VI., 226 
Henry VII., 236, 332 
Princess Katherine, 30, 288, 

294, 314 ff 
Queen Katherine, 347 
Cardinal Langham, 30, 216, 253 
Matilda, 10 


TombofPhilippa, ii, 14, 30,^25 li^ff, 

33 >, 332,371 
Richard II. and Anne, 11, 14, 

215 ff, 279, 289 S 
Margaret of Riclmiond, 237 
Sir Ludovic Robsart, 33 
Sebert, 19 
Aymer dc Valence, 184, 247, 

249, 269, 270 
John and Margaret de Valence, 

37 ff 
WiUiam de Valence, 292, 316 
Duchess of York, 32 
Tombs of Abbots, 344 ff 
Tombs, painting of, 30, 370 ; 
effigies of, 329 ff; records of, 

339 ff 
Transepts. North transept, re- 

mains of, 64 ; porches of, 65, 81 
ff ; evidences as to original forms, 
66 ff ; Rose of, 68 ff, 72 ff, 302 ; 

Transepts — (continuett) 

gable of, 76 ff; sculptures in, 
244. South transept. Rose of, 
73> 7S^ 85 ; description of, 86, 
87, 155 

Vaulting, of Chapter House, 44 ff ; 
of Abbey, 128 ff; of Henry VII.'s 
Chapel, 231, 232, 373 

Wages, 158 

West Front, 90 

Westminster, description of, 60-62 

Westminster Hall, 61, 216, 217, 254, 

Westminster Palace, St. Stephen's 

Chapel in, 61, 181, 182, 188, 189, 

190, 191, 276 
Whitewash, 92, 372 
Windsor, St. George's Chapel at, 

223 ff, 305, 307 
Wren, Sir Christopher, 68 ff , 80 



K.M. = King's Mason ; K.P. = King's Painler, &c. 


Abyncdon, Nicholas de, 194 
Aldewyche, Ade de, 159 
Alberic, 185 
Albon, John, 287 
Andrew, 115 

Barton, Thos., 364 

Bartone, Simon de, 204 

Battle, John, 179 

Battle, Thomas, 188 

Bell, John (mason and sculptor), 240 

Benet, John, 159, 206 

Beverley, Robert de, K.M., 113 

(noui 114. 152 (nou), 163-173 
Blound, William le, 180, 181 
Bole, Walter le, 201, 202 
Box, John, K.M., 203 
Bredone, Thomas de, 204 
Broun, Thomas, 189 
Brown, John, 185 
Bruton, Matthew de, 186 

Canterbury, Alexander of, 363 
Canterbury, Hugh of, 174 
Canterbury, Michael of, 180 if, 

Canterbury, Thomas of, K.M., 188, 

Canterbury, Walter of, K^., 188 
Carlton, Geoffrey de, K.M., 196 
Carlton, William de, 186 
Carter, John, 227 (note) 
Chaundeler, Richard de, 186 
Cherche, Richard at, 364 
Chersaltoun, Henry de, 159 
Child, John, 187 
Cleuddere, William (mason and 

sculptor), 219, 254 
Clifford, John, 220 


Colchester, John, 206 
Colchester, William of, K.M., 206 
ComwayUc, Richard de, 204 
Cnmdale, Richard, K.M., 174-179 
Crundale, Roger, 174, 177, 178 
Crundale, Thomas, 174, 180 
Crundale, Walter, 188 

DiPENHALE, Walter de, 187 
Dippenhall, Robert de, 193 
Dixy, Walter, 364 
Dyminge, de Reyns, Nicholas, 177 

EsTONE, John de, 204 

Gayfere, Thomas, 227 ff 
Gloucester, John of, K.M., 113, 152 

(notf), 161-166, 244, 245 
Gloucester, Thomas of, 203, 204 

Hardecray, Thomas, 204 

Hoo (or Hove), William de, 180, 187 

Hylmer, John, 224 

Janyns (Jcnins), Henry, 223 
Jenins, Robert, K.M., 223, 234 
Joyce, Richard, 204 

Kentbury, Robert, 205, 217 

Lebons, John, K.M., 223, 234 
Ledes, William of, 180 
Lewys, Simon, 206 
Lote, Stephen, 215, 220 
Lynne, Richard, 192 

Macon, Peter, 253 
Maddelay, Richard de, 186 
Mapilton, Thomas, K.M., 206-208 
Martyn, Walter, 227 (nou) 
Mazonsone, Simon le, 185 


Oxford, John of, 158 {note\ 160 

Pabenham, Henry de, 185 
Pabenham, John de, 179, 180 (?), 

Pabenham, Simon de, 184, 185, 187, 

Pabenham, William de, 185 
Padington, Thomas, 205 
Padrington, William de (mason and 

sculptor), 250 
Pavy, Robert, 187 

Radewelle, Ade de, 185 
Radewelle, John de, 186 
Radewelle, Richard de, 185 
Radelphus, K.M., 115 
Ramsey (de Rammeseye), John, 189, 

Ramsey, Nicholas, 194 
Ramsey, Simon, 185 
Ramsey, William, K.M., 189, 192- 

Redmain, Henry, 224, 225 
Robertus, 115 
Rothynge, Adam de, 363 

St. Albans, Hugh of, 186 

St. Omer, John of, 154, 155 

St. Osida, Bernard de, 159 

Sallynge, Richard de, 204, 364 

Sallynge, Walter de, 204 

Shere, Robert de, 186 

Shere, William de, 186 

Shomdale, William, 214 

Shrewsbury, Hugo de, 186 

Smith, Richard, 217 

Sparrow, Walter, 188 

Sponlee, William, 196 

Stone, Nicholas, K.M., 112 

Stow, Richard de, 179 

Stowell, John (mason and sculptor), 

Swallow (Swalwe), John, 216 if 
Suthis, Will, K.M., 112 

Thirsk, 209 

Thomas, 174, 180 

Tischemersh, Henry, 186 

Tischemersh, Hugh, 187 

Toft, John (mason and sculptor), 

Tonebrigg, Roger de, 185 
Tothill, Maurice de, 186 
Tracey, John, 227 {note) 
Tumour, William, 210 
Typerton, Nicholas, 214 
Tyryngton, John de, 204 
Tytemerssche, Peter de, 193 

Vertue, Robert, K.M., 223, 225, 

226, 234 
Vertue, William, 224, 225, 226 

Washbourne, Richard, 216, 217 
Waverley, John of, 115, 362 
Wayte, Richard de, 186 
Waz (or Wantz), William de, 159, 

Weldon, Thomas de, 186 
Westminster, Henry of, K.M., 113, 

126, 150-160 
Whitewelle, John de, 186 
Wightham, William de, 185 
Wihthum, Reginald, 188, 193 
Witham, Richard de, K.M., 174, 

184 ff, 363 
Wolvey, John, 219 
Wolvey, Thomas, 219 
Wrewk, Thomas, 214 
Wylot, John, 204 
Wynford, William de, 212 fF 
Wythe, William Ic, 174 

Yevele, Henry, K.M., 204, 205, 
212-217, 253 


BouRDE, John, 291 



Ellis, Robert, 224 

Canon, of Corfe, Edward, 192 
Canon, of Corfe, Richard, 192 
Canon, of Corfe, William, 192 
Corfe, Adam of, 186, 187 
Corfe, Nicholas of, 186 

Essex, John, 209, 291 

FiFELDE, Thomas, 209 

Knappe, Richard, 206 

Marbler, Hugh, 186 

Odericus (of Rome) (mosaic worker), 

Paris, Richard, 154 
Peter (of Rome) (mosaic worker), 

Ramsey, John, 194 
Russe, John, 206 

Walter le Marbler, 174, 187, 

Well, Simon of, 314 
White, WiUiam de, 186 


Abingdon, Alexander of, 177 ff, 

245 flF 
Aldwich, John, 254 

Belamy, Robert, 230 
BeU, John, 240 
Brasington, Robert, 254 

Castel, Giles van, 224, 239 
Chaucombe, Thomas, 250 
Cleuddere, William, 219, 254 
Codinham, Richard, 230 

Delphyn, Nicholas, 230 
Drawswerd, 230, 233, 234 

FiLLES, John, 224 

GoDEMAN, Nicholas, 256 
Grobc, Derrick van, 224, 239 

Hill, Thomas, 256 
Hudd, John, 230 
Hylton, Walter, 256 

Ireland, William of, 179, 245 

Li^GE, Hawkin de, 251 
Lingard, John, 256 
Lyndesay, William de, 250 

Mymms, John de, 250 

Padrington, William de, 250 

Reading, Richard de, 247, 248 
Richard, 241 

St. Albans, John of, K.S., 244, 245 
Starky, Richard, 256 
Stowell, John, 240 

Thomas, 241 
Toft, John, 250 
Torregiano, 236, 237 

WoTTON, 254 

Ymber, Lawrence, 230, 233, 234, 235 


Alexander, K.C, 113 ff, 154 ff, 162, 
164, 166, 168, 245 

Beck, John, 181 

Canterbury, Peter of, 187 
Coke, Humphrey, 225 
Colebrook, Robert de, 174, 181